7 Tips to Avoid Back Pain in the Office
If you have a clerical job, you are more likely to suffer from back pain. You might even be more at risk than people in physically challenging jobs. Actually, 80% of Americans suffer from back pain at a given time in their lives, often as a result of poor seating habits and lack of ergonomics. Back pain is among the most frequent causes of people taking time off work to visit a doctor. And when the problem is more than just a temporary discomfort, you should consult your back specialist.
Yet, to prevent this, you can be more proactive and take some steps to protect your back. Below are the top seven simple actions you can do as from today to minimize potential back problems in the future:
1. Workout at Least Twice a Per Week
If you want to avoid back pain, exercising your core, including your back, abdominal, and pelvis muscles, approximately two to three times per week will be very beneficial. There are dozens of basic exercises to improve your back health, but the most famous examples are crunch, board, bridge, and sit-up. You can ask your coach or physiotherapist for advice on the appropriate technique for each.
2. Sit Up With the Right Posture
The benefits of good posture is not just a fairy tale. In fact if you usually slouch forward or lean back at your desk, you may misalign your spine. Set your chair in a way that your feet lays flat on the floor and knees are aligned or a bit lower than your hips. Sit up straights with your back against the back of the chair while ensuring that the keyboard is just in front of you and not too far.
3. Take Regular Breaks
Try not to stay in the same position for long hours without any breaks. Stand up occasionally to stretch your whole body. In an upright position, reach for the ceiling, then tap your toes and then repeat. One or two minutes of stretching per hour often has excellent benefits in protecting your back.
4. Ensure that your office environment is ergonomically designed
The term “ergonomics” refers to the science of improving products to adapt them for human use. In an office, ergonomics includes almost everything; the height of your desk and chair, the position of your screen, phone, and keyboard. As far as ergonomics are concerned, a basic principle is to fix something that feels or seems awkward.
5. Think About a Standing Desk
Standing desks are gaining more popularity over the years due to its many advantages, and one of them is that it allows you to keep your back healthy. If one of your colleagues has one, you can even ask to try it one day before purchasing your own.
6. Invest in an Excellent Office Chair
You often spend a lot of your time in your office, perhaps even more than in your own house. Therefore it’s best to ensure that you sit in a comfortable chair. Your office chair should be at a level so that your feet can be flat on the floor and your thighs parallel to the ground.
7. Take the Time to Relax
When getting back home after a long day of work, you are perhaps often tempted to sit down again. Yet, even if you sit on your couch, this will not benefit your back health. Therefore, it would be better that you favor walking, standing, or even lying down on your bed and your stomach.
With these 7 tips, you can now prevent future back pain. However, you should be aware that these do not guarantee that you won’t get back issues. Don’t forget to leave a comment if you know any other tips to do at work to avoid back pain.