Which zone of the spine do you think is the one most operated on? Quite right: at 70 per cent, the lower back ranks at number one.

The reason is our upright posture. The fact that we can walk, stand, move and turn while upright is made possible by the very special shape of the spine with its support corset of muscles. Today, what our ancestors acquired slowly three or four million years ago seems natural to us. But there are moments that make us painfully aware that this S-shape of the spine with its shifting of the centre of gravity to the pelvis can over the years cause problems. Degenerative diseases of the spine, that is to say, those caused by wear and tear and the ageing process, are the trigger.

Slipped discs, the pain of arthritis, degenerative scoliosis or narrowing of the spinal canal are typical examples of this type of degenerative spinal disease. If you take plenty of exercise, walking, jogging, swimming or doing other sports, you will not only have a good chance that a conservative therapy without the use of a scalpel will be successful, but will also prevent these diseases for the long term.