MadeNUSA saidand next week there will be another article that says crunches are great for you ... and the week following another one will say they are not... and so on and so on... the moral .. if it ain't hurting you continue on
Ah, but that's kind of the point. I first had back problems in my late 20s (which is longer ago than I like to think about). Then they stopped for a long time, but they eventually started up again. The last few years, my back has rarely been in great pain (though it's certainly in some pain sometimes), but my alignment is seriously screwed up.
And sometimes I think that I've gotten so used to the pain that I just don't notice it much anymore.
Is this the result, wholly or in part, of so many years of a certain type of ab work? I don't know. I'm going to try the recommendations in the article and hope they help, though I know the problems are probably never going to go away completely.
I should probably mention that I have spondylolysthesis. This may have been congenital or it may have been the result of things I did or something that happened to me. Nobody knows.
It's all very confusing because, as you say, next week they'll say something else. I can't say how many times I've heard "Don't do situps," "Yes, you can do situps," "Situps are terrible for you," "Situps are good if done properly," and on and on and on.
But I'm not sure that the moral is "If it ain't hurting you, continue on." If only it were that simple. It may take a long time before you're aware that it's been hurting you bit by bit on a gradual basis and eventually builds up into something big. And you may not even know what's caused the problem because it's not obvious, because it didn't happen all at once and because the act of doing it doesn't in and of itself cause pain.