Lumbar support belt. Which one?

People often ask which lumbar support works better to help ease their pain. There is however no one answer for all, as sources of pain can be attributed to different causes, hence which one (or even the need of one) will depend on each individual case.

Here I’ve summarised them into categories:


  • Plain belt: an old school belt that is narrow in its width, covering a segment of lower back. It can be difficult to secure in place if one is subject to constant movements, e.g. walking, running. This old style support belt may be hard to find these days. It helps provide some relief if a person suffers from muscle spasm and only requires some degree of prompt to encourage muscle relaxation.


  • Belt with little pocket: this type of belt is designed with a pocket for heat pack placement. It provides an additional benefit to plain belt, allowing greater muscle relaxation via heat therapy.


  • Belt with design that allows contoured fitting of lower back curvature: contoured design for better fitting and support to curvature of lower back. This type of belt is wider in width, covering lower part of thoracic spine and down to the apex of sacrum. It allows firmer support to lower back, and depending on its constructing material, it may also provide some level of warmth to help promote muscle relaxation. Its main application is however used for promotion of core muscle function and help minimize lumbar disc irritation.


  • Belt with magnet stripes: there is no evidence to support the use of static magnet for pain relief.


It’s important to keep in minds that not every back pain is of same cause. While use of a back support belt may help ease some level of discomfort, due to the complexity of lower back structures, investigation and proper diagnosis are strongly advised.