Reduce Back Pain When You Are Sitting - Aug 2002 Adjustable Bed, Memory Foam Mattress, Beds and Pillows - Natural Back Pain Relief Products - self-care products

Reduce Back Pain When Sitting

Back Be Nimble Newsletter - August 2002
There are a few relatively simple things you can do that will go a long way in helping you manage your back or neck condition on a daily basis. One of the most important is to have proper support and posture while you're sitting at your desk.

People who sit at a desk for long periods of time are definitely at risk for developing back pain, as sitting (especially slouching) can add excessive stress to the back muscles and compressive forces to the spinal discs.

Sitting with your back properly supported without slouching helps to minimize the strain on your back. Supporting the natural inward curve of your lower back (lordosis) is very important if you're sitting for a long time.

Here are a few guidelines for good posture and support for your lower back while sitting at a desk:

  • Adjust your chair to make sure your knees are slightly lower than your hips and the weight of your thighs is supported by your feet rather than by the seat of the chair.

  • Sit as close to your desk as possible.

  • Make sure the top of your computer screen or working materials are about at eye level.

  • It's good to have armrests on your chair to support your elbows at a 90-degree angle when your shoulders are relaxed.

  • The backrest of your chair should provide supportive pressure in your lower back. If you can, get a new chair that provides this support. If this is not an option for you, place an orthopedic lumbar support in your chair.

  • It sometimes helps stabilize your back to put something under your feet to elevate them slightly while angling your toes higher than your heels. There are good adjustable foot rests made for this purpose.

  • If you use your office phone or cell phone a lot, consider using a headset or speakerphone to take the strain off your neck.

Some people prefer more active chairs whereby they actually sit on a physio-gymnic exercise ball that helps them maintain their posture upright without back support. This is a good idea in some cases, but doesn't work for everyone.

Support your back while driving:

Driving for long periods of time, or during a stressful daily commute, may place a lot of strain on your back. When you're driving, remember to:

  • Make sure your car seat provides enough support for your lower back. If it doesn't, try using a commercial back support or rolling up a small towel and placing it between your lower back and the seat.

  • Slightly recline the seat back and move the seat closer to the steering wheel to compensate.

  • Sit so that you don't have to stretch to reach the steering wheel, as reaching increases the pressure on the spine and can stress your neck and shoulders.

Move about throughout the day:

Even if you're sitting with correct posture, holding the same position for a long period of time can build up stress and cause discomfort, so it's important to move about during the day. Try to take frequent breaks to stretch and walk around. Whenever possible, take the stairs instead of the escalator or walk rather than drive.

We hope that these suggestions for simple changes you can make to your sitting posture will help you better maintain a healthy back.

At Back Be Nimble, We bend over backwards to help your back be nimble again...

Best Wishes and Sit Well,

Dr. Brad Lustick
CEO and Ergonomic Supervisor

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