England's Jonathan Trott admitted his side were dissatisfied with their performance after ending the first day of the fourth Ashes Test on 238-9.
Australia's Nathan Lyon took four wickets for 42 as the home side struggled to make runs.
England looked comfortable at 149-2 midway through the afternoon session but lost seven wickets for 65 runs.
"We're disappointed that we got ourselves into a good position then got ourselves into a bad one," Trott said.
"In cricket, you get yourself out or it's good pressure from the opposition that makes you play a shot you shouldn't have. Generally the fault's in you as a batsman, and we could all say that today.
"I think 250 is the average (County Championship first innings) score here at Durham, but that would be the easy route to go, to say we're at par. Clearly we're not. We probably didn't have the best of days.
"Test match cricket is five days. You can't go out there and give your wicket away. You hang in there and wait for your time and you have to earn the right to score runs in Test cricket.
"It's a little bit uncharacteristic of us as a side, because we put a lot of emphasis on our wickets. When that doesn't happen, you're disappointed."
Trott had played well in racing to 49 from just 60 balls, only to edge a ball from Lyon on to his pads and into the hands of Usman Khawaja.
After averaging 86 in his first two Ashes series, England's number three is down to 24 in this one, but he is confident that both he and his team can turn this match around.
He said: "I've been able to get three good starts and haven't gone on, but that's cricket. There's no divine right to get big scores.
"Things haven't gone my way but I've still got full confidence that I'll be able to do that, and hopefully in the next innings I can make a big contribution.
"Australia have bowled well, set good fields for the way they were bowling and made it difficult to score.
"At the beginning of the series, everyone said they have got a good bowling line-up, and that's true. We've made it difficult for their batters and they've made it difficult for us."
With a 2-0 lead in the five-match series, England have already retained the Ashes, and Trott insists this fourth Test is also eminently winnable despite England's collapse on Friday.
He said: "The guys are pretty upbeat. It's a similar score to what we got at Nottingham in the first innings, and we ended up winning a fantastic Test match there, so hopefully we can do the same here.
"It's about trying to squeeze every run out of the game and apply as much pressure as you can. We've got to try and wrestle the momentum back on Saturday like we have done in the past."