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The spine is made up of 33 vertebrae, a system of interlocking pieces. The vertebra are separated by discs and held together by ligaments and muscles. The discs are shock absorbing pads between vertebrae which support and distribute the weight of your body. Ligaments bind the vertebrae together and give additional strength to the discs and joints of the back. Muscles produce and control movement of the spine. They provide strength and support to the back.
Injuries can occur to discs, joints and ligaments, due to acute trauma, poor posture and the accumulation of physical stress on the spine. Problems can also occur as a result of arthritis, degenerating discs, muscle tension and muscle weakness.
It is possible to prevent back injuries occurring or becoming worse by adopting good habits in everyday life.