October 16th marks World Spine Day, an annual event recognized as the largest public health initiative dedicated to raising awareness about the global burden of spinal pain and disability.

World Spine Day brings together individuals from various backgrounds, including health professionals, exercise and rehabilitation experts, public health advocates, schoolchildren, governments and the wider public. This celebration extends across all continents and emphasizes the universal significance of spinal health.

The 2024 initiative urges individuals to spread awareness about the worldwide impact of spinal pain and disability. It aims to empower people of all ages, across all nations to adopt evidence-based strategies for maintaining spinal health under the slogan “Support Your Spine“. The campaign will feature a distinctive two-toned blue and green ribbon, with further details available soon on the website.

Key Facts:

  • In 2020, low back pain (LBP) affected 619 million people globally and it is estimated that the number of cases will increase to 843 million cases by 2050, driven largely by population expansion and ageing (1).
  • LBP is the single leading cause of disability worldwide and the condition for which the greatest number of people may benefit from rehabilitation.
  • LBP can be experienced at any age, and most people experience LBP at least once in their life.
  • Prevalence increases with age up to 80 years, while the highest number of LBP cases occurs at the age of 50–55 years. LBP is more prevalent in women (2).
  • Non-specific LBP is the most common presentation of LBP (about 90% of cases).

In numerous low and middle-income countries, conventional healthcare resources and dedicated spinal health professionals are often inaccessible. Consequently, it is essential to prioritize empowering populations and communities to self-manage their conditions. Moreover, the impact of back pain on industries and economies is substantial, even in high-income countries, underscoring the critical importance of effective management and prevention measures.

World Spine Day emphasizes the critical importance of global efforts to address spinal pain and disability by urging governments, communities, and public health bodies to take action. For experts in spinal health, this occasion presents an excellent opportunity to actively participate in their communities and make meaningful contributions.

Support Your Spine” is a call to action for individuals to prioritize spinal health across all aspects of life. Whether at home, in the workplace, schools, or within our communities, fostering healthy habits is essential to support the spine throughout the various stages of life. It is imperative for people of all backgrounds to recognize the importance of staying mobile, avoiding prolonged periods of physical inactivity and refraining from overloading their spines with excessive weight or strain. Additionally, adopting healthy lifestyle choices such as weight loss and smoking cessation can significantly contribute to spinal well-being.

We call on everyone worldwide to get involved in World Spine Day 2024’s “Support Your Spine” campaign.

To find out more, go to www.worldspineday.org Facebook, Instagram, Threads and X.