It’s World Osteopathy Day so we thought we would share with you some useful tips to help with or ideally minimise the chances of back pain.
1. Exercise your back regularly – this can easily be done just through walking, or reduce intensity on the body at first by starting with swimming and using exercise bikes. These are all excellent to strengthen your back muscles but anything that you enjoy and helps you keep ACTIVE will be beneficial.
2. Keep active and moving even when you have pain. Gentle walking and stretching will prevent stiffness. Also try to avoid long periods of bed rest as this is counterproductive. Unsure of what to do? Then we can help… just get in touch with us at clinic.
3. Always lift and carry objects close to your body, bend your knees and your hips not your back and never bend and twist at the same time.
4. Try to maintain a healthy diet and lifestyle as this will help prevent back pain. Quit smoking as it increases your chances of developing back pain.
5. Visit your local Osteopath for a full assessment and diagnosis. If pain is persistent see your GP as they may be able to prescribe stronger painkillers or investigate further, if needed.
6. What is your working environment like? Do you sit at a desk 9-5 or longer? Consider how your desk station and workspace may be affecting or contributing to your back pain. Employers are now great at ensuring that work station assessments are carried out, and if not get in touch we would be happy to advise. Manual work? In most cases this should be a better thing – however, be aware of health and safety recommendations and lifting/loading protocol, it is there for a reason and will help minimise the risk of injury.
7. Avoid carrying heavy bags on one shoulder… use a double strap rucksack where possible to balance the load.
8. Always try to maintain ‘a neutral spine’. Avoid slumping in your chair for long periods, hunching over your desk and walking with bad ‘form’. Engage those gluten and activate your core and minimise the risk of injury. For more advice on how to do this – follow us on social media for hints and tips
9. Confined to a chair all day? Try sitting on the front of the chair with a 2” foam block to promote the ‘neutral’ stable spine. Vary your sitting position every few minutes and take breaks from sitting, stand, stretch, walk…
10. If you do suffer from back pain caused or made worse by being at work, talk to your employer or HR department. They may be able to help you come up with adaptations to your work environment, patterns and activities in order to help you better manage your back pain, or get in touch and we can help.