The place that you feel your age more than anywhere else is in your back. Even if you don’t have “back problems,” it can be harder to get up off the floor or you feel the stiffness as you rise up from your chair. But there are simple, everyday things that you can do to prevent back pain from getting any worse or helping the back pain that you have go away.
You don’t have to be a yogi you can simply stretch, but yoga is great too. Stretching is a great start and end your day. This is also a good way to warm up and cool off from your day, getting you into a relaxed state of mind.
Stretches can also help keep your muscles flexible so that you can do things you might not have been able to do for years! The more you stretch, the fancier and more complex your stretches can become. This also opens the door for you to be able to work easier and do other fun exercises.
Foam rollers are one popular but inexpensive item you can pick up that will help you stretch your muscles, especially in your neck and back. If you have limited mobility, you should consult with a physician before trying anything too aggressive, but many chiropractors will be able to show you modifications based upon your health and mobility limits.
Aqua aerobics and stretching is another good alternative, especially if you are suffering from pain or reduced mobility. Many local fitness and aquatic centers will have classes lead by trained professionals that can show you how to effectively stretch.
Talk to a Chiropractor
Chiropractors are not just people you turn to whenever you hurt your back, but you should also be able to go to them in times of wellness, so that you know how to keep your back in good health and tip-top shape. They can inform you on the stretches to do in the morning and tell you how much you should be standing and sitting and walking. They can even help you find the right insoles if you both think that that is something you need. They will be your best friend, even if you don’t get to talk to them every day.
Wellness care is become growingly popular, with many realize good overall health leads to less sick time, improved moods, and a host of other benefits. From expectant mothers, to children, all the way through senior citizens, chiropractic care is important and affordable.
Practice Good Posture
Everyone is guilty of slouching from time to time, but this is the number one cause of back pain and problems. Be sure, whether you’re sitting in an office chair or an armchair, to sit with your back straight and to have your shoulders back rather than hunched forward and slouchy. If you need to adapt your desk setup, then don’t be afraid to do that, either. Your back is more important than anything else because it supports the rest of your body.
For guys, small changes like removing your wallet from your pocket while sitting can decrease low back pain. They also make posture bands that you put around your shoulders and it helps you to notice and correct yourself when slumping over.
Wear Sensible Shoes
Although they are nice, high heels and dress shoes every single day can damage your back. If you have to wear them for work, then you will especially need insoles or pairs of more comfortable, spine-supporting shoes that you can slip on when no one is watching. If you have the option to wear these shoes versus other shoes when you go out, then wear the other more comfortable shoes and your back will thank you for it later by keeping you pain-free.
If you experience foot pain often, adding insoles or ordering shoes that better match your foot type will help tremendously. Many places, including Wal-Mart now how self service kiosks that you can use to see how your stand and what type of insert would be most beneficial for you.
A good pair of shoes is tough to beat, so before buying the cheapest pair, keep in mind all the pain and suffering (literally) that the right pair of shoes can save you.
Balance Standing and Sitting
If you’re on your feet all day, that’s never good for your back. But if you’re sitting stuck behind a desk all day, that’s also never good for your back, especially if you practice bad posture. Try to find a balance during the day for standing, sitting, and walking.
Consider taking a walking lunch if you’re stuck behind a desk all day, or if you walk and move a lot, then don’t feel selfish taking the elevator or sitting down for five minutes while you take a little snack break. Again, your back is of the utmost importance because without it, you go nowhere!
Along those lines, if you will be sitting for long periods, investing into a chair with good low back support can make a big difference. Keeping your head up and forward if you are looking at monitors can also help your overall posture. You can buy inexpensive risers to put your monitors on if you need to elevate them.
If your workplace is more progressive, there are also a number of less common but supposedly effective ways to improve posture. A balance ball seat or even a kneeling chair have be touted as huge improvements, and don’t forget a standing desk.
Ultimately, there are a number of things you can try, but none of those make up for regular chiropractic care. Having proper alignment, staying active, and making small changes can all add up to big health improvements.
If you try all of these things and you still feel back pain, that is all the more reason to talk to your chiropractor or even invest in some high-quality insoles. But these few things can help keep your back in tip top shape despite years of use and abuse.