4 In-Office Practices to Help Prevent Back Pain
Back pain is all too common among office workers. Since your spine gets compressed when you sit, spending too much time seated can lead to lower back pain.
Office workers, who spend hours sitting in front of computer screens, are particularly vulnerable to back pain. If you want to reduce the risk of straining your back at the office, here are a few practices you can follow.
Practice Good Posture
Your back pain relief can be further hindered if you fail to adopt the right posture. Avoid slouching, tilting your spine past a 90-degree angle, or putting stress on your lumbar discs by bending excessively.
To make sure your back gets proper support, sit deep into your seat and adjust the back of your chair to ensure that it fits the curve of your spine comfortably.
It may help to keep your feet planted flat on the floor, with your thighs parallel to the ground. If necessary, use a footstool.
Maintaining such a position can be difficult, especially when we're busy with work. It can also help to take breaks from sitting every so often so you can remember to reset your posture.
Walk, Stretch, or Exercise During Breaks
You can decompress your spine by taking breaks from sitting. Take a short walk to improve circulation across the body. If you make a consistent routine out of walking during breaks, you might also be able to strengthen your muscles and improve your spine’s stability.
Stretching can help you alleviate any back aches and pains associated with sitting. It can also improve your flexibility and strengthen muscles around the spine area. There are a number of ways you can stretch while at your workstation. One stretch you can do is to lift your hands up straight with your fingers interlaced.
Pressing your arms back as far as possible, lean slowly to the left, then repeat the process on the right. This exercise can help alleviate strain on the spine.
Invest in Ergonomic Products
Ergonomic products have been engineered to accommodate the needs of the human body. Some ergonomic office products that can help with back pain include standing desks, ergonomic chairs, and lumbar support cushions.
For example, using a standing desk with adjustable height allows you to switch between sitting and standing as you work. This way, your spine won’t spend as much time compressed.
Investing in an ergonomic chair can also give your spine proper support and prevent slouching. If you’re not allowed to change your office chair, you can go for lumbar support cushions, which you can attach to any seat of your liking.
Lumbar support can keep your lower back cushioned to reduce pain as you sit. Like ergonomic chairs, lumbar supports can also encourage proper posture. With tools like these, your body will spend less time in awkward positions, thus reducing the risk of muscular strain.
Wear Supportive Shoes
Sometimes, back pain can be attributed to improper footwear, especially among working women. The shoes you wear will inevitably affect the way you walk. Certain shoes, such as heels and flip-flops, promote styles of walking that can put undue stress on the spine.
The best shoes for avoiding back pain have heel heights between 1-2 inches. Raising your heel slightly above toe level can alleviate pressure on the feet while walking.
Additionally, your shoe should have proper cushioning and heel support. When you walk around in stiff or too-soft shoes, your soles won't be able to properly absorb the impact from walking.
That shock then goes up to your legs, thighs, and spine, which could lead
to worsening back pain.
Though humans weren't meant to sit at desks for hours at a time, the current working landscape makes it a necessity. Still, just because you’re an office worker doesn’t mean you’re doomed to experience back pain.
To avoid back pain, you only need to listen to your body and adopt the right strategies for minimising musculoskeletal strain.
Use the best posture correctors, take breaks from sitting, stay active, and invest in the correct equipment and footwear, and you'll find yourself
feeling better in no time.
Written by Khloe Carls for yourbackpainrelief.com