Backaches from sitting? 9 proven ways to find relief
Workaholic, but tired of the backaches? If so, worry not, with these 9 strategies you can bid farewell to backaches and even improve your productivity at work.
Are you one of those countless individuals who spend the majority of their workdays seated at a desk? If so, you are likely to be familiar with the issue of backache caused due to long sitting hours.
Don't worry, you are not alone. The Spine Society of India estimates that at any given time, 10 to 15 per cent of the population experiences backaches. A considerable portion of this can be attributed to prolonged sitting during work hours.
We know that it’s not practical to change your work environment or to quit the job either. In this article, we will explore a middle path, where you can bid farewell to those persistent backaches and embrace a more productive and healthier work-life. Sounds too good to be true? Well, not if you implement the following strategies.
Setting up an ergonomic workstation at home or at your office is important for maintaining good posture which helps in reducing backaches. This can be done by adjusting your chair and desk’s height so that your feet are flat on the ground and your knees are at a 90-degree angle.
Additionally, ensure the computer monitor is at eye level with easy access to the keyboard and mouse. There are ergonomic chairs with lumbar support available, investing in one can also help in reducing the strain on your back for long sitting hours.
Take regular breaks
One of the most effective ways to deal with the issue of backaches is to take regular breaks. Sometimes we get so engrossed with our tasks that we forget to take breaks. The solution to this problem is to set timers that remind you to stand up, stretch, and walk around every 30 minutes. These short breaks will help in relaxing your muscles as well as improve blood circulation.
Desk exercises, popularly known as 'deskercises', are a great way to improve your posture while working for long hours. Exercises as simple as seated leg raises, chair squats, or torso twists can help you maintain your muscle flexibility, reducing the strain on your back.
Proper sitting posture
Proper sitting posture is very important to prevent backaches. A few things to keep in mind are keeping the back straight, shoulders relaxed, and avoiding slouching to prevent unnecessary pressure on your spine.
Use a standing desk
If possible you can consider using a standing desk. Dividing the work time between sitting and standing will help alleviate the stress on your back muscles. Start slowly with short standing periods, duration can be increased gradually as your body adjusts.
Stretching is a great way to relieve muscle tension and prevent backaches. Incorporate stretching exercises like cat-cow, child's pose, and spinal twists into your daily schedule to keep your spine flexible and reduce the risk of discomfort.
Stay hydrated and eat right
Even though the impact is not so direct, proper hydration and a balanced diet do help in reducing backaches by keeping your spinal discs well lubricated, and a nutritious diet helps in maintaining a healthy weight that reduces the load on your back.
Mindful breathing and relaxation
Many times stress can be a major factor in worsening backaches. Stress can be reduced by practising mindful breathing and relaxation techniques. This requires you to commit a few minutes every day to focus on your breath, release tension from your muscles, and calm your mind.
Last but not least, staying physically active is important. Apart from finding ways to keep yourself active at work, being active outside of work is a must for maintaining a healthy back.
This doesn’t mean spending hours at the gym lifting heavy weights. Incorporating basic exercises such as yoga and pilates into your routine can help strengthen your core. Having a strong core will provide better support to your spine and reduce the risk of backaches.
Sitting for extended periods at work doesn't have to be synonymous with backaches. You can prevent the discomfort that comes with a backache by implementing these strategies. All you need to do is take breaks and make the necessary adjustments to your workspace and daily routine.
Remember, a healthy person is no doubt a productive person automatically. So, prioritise your health and bid your backache adieu- your spine will thank you for it!