Lower back pain is a common condition among working Canadians, with 85% expected to experience it at some point in their lives. Causes of lower back pain vary depending on the person, as everyone’s spinal structure is slightly different. Muscle strain is a common cause, which includes lifting heavy objects, sudden movements, sports injuries, and poor posture.
Office jobs increase the amount of time we spend in a seated position and oftentimes lead to poor posture. Unfortunately, quitting your job is probably not a feasible option; however, there are a number of strategies you can apply to reduce back pain or the chance of developing issues in the future.
Exercise Your Core
A strong core is essential to increased balance and stability because your core is responsible for distributing the pressure around the body. Your core supports the weight of your entire body, including you back and neck. By strengthening your core, you increase its ability to support the rest of your body. Common core exercises include sit-ups, planks, and bicycle crunches. That being said, you don’t necessarily need to do an abs-specific exercise to target your core. Pilates and yoga incorporate dynamic movements that lead to full body strengthening. If you are experiencing back difficulties, be sure to speak with a certified chiropractor to create a strength-training plan.
Invest in Ergonomic Furniture
Considering that you use office furniture during the majority of your day, it’s worth investing in pieces that also support the wellbeing of your body. Many companies offer ergonomic options for desks, monitors, and chairs. If you’re considering just getting one piece of ergonomic furniture, you should purchase a high-quality office chair. With the right support, an ergonomic office chair ensures you are in an optimal seated posture. Many companies are also using standing desks as a solution for employees who experience ailments from sitting all day. They can sometimes be pricey, so consider trying an adjustable monitor stand before making the investment to see if it’s something that works for you.
Practice Good Posture
Good posture makes sure that you aren’t misaligning anything in your spine or straining muscles after spending a long time in the same position. While in your office chair, make sure to sit up tall and straight, with your feet flat on the floor. Adjust your office chair so your thighs are angled down slightly, as this will force you to sit upright in order for your feet to touch the ground. To make sure you aren’t looking down all day, adjust the bottom of your computer monitor to be in line with your chin.
Get Up and Move
Although you may not want to leave your work, taking a few minutes to get up and stretch is worth it for your body in the long run. Set a timer on your computer or phone to get up every 30 minutes. Even if it just means walking around or stretching for only one minute, this time gives your body an opportunity to stretch out. Getting up for a walk or stretch has also been linked to boosted energy later on in the workday. This keeps you productive for longer, making it a worthwhile investment of your time.
Symptio Chiropractic Clinic in Kelowna is dedicated to helping you achieve optimal health. Learn more about our chiropractic care, spinal decompression, and lower level laser therapy by calling 250-862-2002.