Many patients come to physical therapy with back pain. They come in asking the question, “why does my back hurt?” Well, the answer is not the same for everyone. A physical therapist has to perform a thorough evaluation to determine the cause of the patient’s back pain. The evaluation consists of finding out specific details from the patient about their back pain. This leads the therapist into a specific evaluation of the patient’s range of motion, strength, flexibility, and stability. Typically back pain comes from a lack of mobility, strength, and flexibility. For some patients, it is more of a decrease in flexibility, for others because of strength deficits, and some folks it is a combination of both. Once this is determined, your therapist will develop a plan of care to improve upon the deficits found during your evaluation. On average, it takes 4-6 weeks of consistent physical therapy to achieve the ultimate goal of decreased pain and improved function. The key as a patient is to be patient and stick with the plan. If after a month of physical therapy you do not notice any improvements, make sure to speak with your physical therapist to determine the appropriate continued treatment plan.