Causes of back spasms and cramps?

Eighty percent of the adult population will likely suffer from back pain at one point or another. From spasms and twinges to cramps and aches, back pain can stop you from engaging in almost every part of life. Understanding the causes of back spasms and cramps, will be the first step in treatment and prevention. 

Causes of back spasms and cramps?

Spasms or cramps in the back often feel like a surge of pain and discomfort, the sensation that the muscle is flexing and contracting or seizing up, all involuntarily.

It can last for seconds, minutes or even hours and it usually occurs when some of the muscles in the back are inflamed due to injury or strain, but can also flare up when the body is trying to protect itself. 

1. Injury

Whether it’s a bulging disc, a bad bruise or a tear in the muscle, injuries in the back can lead to ongoing spasms and cramping, even days or weeks after the original injury.

2. Strain or overuse

When you exercise, the muscles engage and work hard to perform their function. However, when you don’t rest the muscles, or push too hard, they can become strained and develop microtears that aggravate and inflame the area.]

For those who push too hard they may find their back sore a day or two afterwards. This is known as DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness), and is a sign that you’re not stretching or resting properly.

All of this can lead to cramping and spasms in the back.

Try these 5 tips for post-workout muscle recovery.

Bauerfeind back brace

3. Lack of activity

Just as too much straining and movement of the muscles can cause issues, the opposite is also true.

When you don’t exercise regularly, your muscles start to weaken and the force that is put onto your spine and base muscles (the lower back in particular) causes more strain and leaves them vulnerable to ongoing issues.

4. Poor posture

Whether it’s sitting at the desk, driving your car or the way you’re bending and lifting, how you sit and stand has a huge effect on your back muscles.

When you’re slouching or tilting your back, the strain goes straight to one part, resulting in inflamed and spasming back issues.

5. Disc issues

The discs in your spine sit between each vertebrae, allowing for movement while protecting the most important part of your spine, the spinal column.

When these discs become inflamed from injury or strain, they can cause the surrounding  muscle to go into spasm.

6. Stress

While physical issues are the most obvious cause for physical pain, stress is not to be underestimated. When you’re stressed or anxious, your body often produces more adrenalin and other chemicals that cause the muscles to tense.

In prolonged cases of stress or anxiety, this can lead to distinct physical pain and chronic back issues.

Treatment for back spasms and cramps

Taking care of your back pain, both now and in the future, is one of the best things you can do for your physical and mental health. 


Your back is made up of the spinal core structure that’s supported and stabilised by a network of muscles. In particular, the core muscles around your abs, the glutes and lumbar muscles are all crucial to stabilising the back.

These are so effective in this way that a strong back is often regarded as the best protection. Building up strength in these muscles is a great way to reduce the risk of spasms occurring.

Wearing a back support

While we can exercise and stretch out the muscles, sometimes we just have to keep on going, even while it hurts.

By wearing back supports and braces we can alleviate the symptoms while stabilising the back to strengthen it more.

Supports like the LumboTrain Back Support are perfect for spasms and cramps, stabilising the area while massaging the muscles themselves for active and all day wear.

Bauerfeind back brace for back spasms and cramps


Particularly when it comes to cramps and stiffness, stretching the back muscles helps to relive the pain both short and long-term. This is especially effective when done after exercise.


Sometimes the pain isn’t going away, even when you’re trying to treat it at home. It could be an underlying issue or a chronic injury.

Whatever the cause, when the symptoms keep persisting, it’s important to see a doctor or physiotherapist. They’ll diagnose the issue and provide the best outcome, which can be a combination of therapy, medication and exercise.

Do you have private health? Most private health extras will cover Bauerfeind Products, check to see if yours is includedBauerfeind Private Health Insurance Inquiry

Bauerfeind products are developed at our innovation and manufacturing facility in Zeulenroda, Germany. Based on years of scientific research, our award-winning braces and support garments are highly recommended by medical professionals and athletes worldwide.

For assistance selecting the right product for your needs, book a video consultation with a Bauerfeind expert: Book Video Call, or call us on 1300 668 466

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