Do you look after your back? Most of us don’t.
Picture yourself sitting in front of your computer, typing furiously as your thoughts pour out through your fingers. Now, move your focus to your back—your spine, to be precise—and check if it is in the right posture.
9 out of 10 times, it will be in a posture least favorable to your back. It happens when we are immersed in an activity that demands our attention to such an extent we are oblivious to anything else.
Maintaining the correct posture that suits our back is a matter of habit—a habit that’s difficult to work on when there are other things on our mind, like completing our work or enjoying a movie.
But, it’s this wrong posture that plays havoc with our back in the long run. For, not only the back, but our neck, shoulders, lower back, and the muscles and joints in these areas are affected because of faulty postures.
Look After Your Back, Please!
How Bad Posture Affects Us
Initially, the pain is occasional, showing up once in a while when we have had a particularly busy day. We pop an anti-inflammatory and get on with our work.
Over a period of time, the pain becomes an everyday affair.
We wake up with a backache and go through the day with the ache nagging at us each time we try to sit, bend or lie down.
Gradually, the pain moves towards the neck and then the shoulders and the lower back and the limbs. And, before we realize it, the pain becomes a chronic event that’s hard to resolve with just painkillers.
Slouching or Bending In Front Of Your Computer
Pay attention to where you sit to work. Sit at a table and not on a bed or a sofa. If you do sit on the bed, make sure you do not recline on the pillows, but move away from the pillows and sit erect.
Sit on a chair while working. If you find the height of the chair uncomfortable, place a pillow for some elevation so that you don’t have to lift your shoulders as you type.
Hunching Over At the Dining Table
When you sit to eat at the table, maintain your posture. Sit erect. It might not make you feel like you are relaxing, but that ‘relaxed’ posture is really not good for the back.
Remember, an erect spine keeps your back happy!
Cradling Your Phone Between Your Ear and Shoulder
Most of us do that when we have to take a call while working/cooking. And, when we do that, our neck goes, “Ouch! That hurts!”
You can always switch on the speaker if your hands are occupied with something else.
Lying Down To Watch TV or Read a Book
Haven’t we been told to sit and not lie down while reading a book or watching TV? We reprimand our kids when they do it and give them a lecture on correct posture, don’t we? Well, that lecture applies to us, too.
Standing or Walking With a Slouch
It only results in a permanent slouch, a hump on the back that refuses to flatten in spite of all the exercises you might do later.
How You Can Look After Your Back
1. Maintain the correct posture. If you are tired at the end of the day just lie down. Reclining on a sofa hurts your back furthermore.
2. Make sure you don’t bend over the phone or your computer keyboard. Make sure your neck is straight, too.
3. Practice some stretching exercises to ease the back pain and strengthen your core muscles instead of popping painkillers. Yoga is the best option to tackle back problems.
4. Do not sit in a place for more than 45 minutes. It hurts your back, your lower back and limbs and is bad for your overall health. Walk around for 10 minutes and then get back to work.
5. Walk as much as you can. It’s the best exercise for your entire body.
Look after your back, please. If you don’t take care of your back now, you will have to pay for it later. And, then, it will be too late to change your ways. Do it now!
Oh I’ve suffered a lot thanks to a bad posture. I ended up with spondylitis. The pain is so intense I thought I would never be able to sit up and type again. Physiotherapy really helped but now I’m more conscious of how I treat my back and neck.
I can imagine how painful it must have been for you, Tulika. I too experienced it and it was only in the recent years that I realized I need to change my posture to feel the pain reduce.
Take care! Hugs!
I have degenerative disc disease, so severe back pain is my constant companion. Four weeks ago I couldn’t walk as a result. Yoga and walking are the two things that helps with pain management for me. Now my leg is in pain and the doctor said it is neuropathy. The disc problem is causing nerve damage in the leg it seems. I’m walking as much as I can as it helps.
Oh dear! That must be such a pain, Vinitha! You will have to take great care Vini. Be gentle with yourself. And, it’s good that you are into yoga and walking.
I am trying my level best, Shilpa. With an almost 3-year-old at home who is way too active for my liking, things aren’t easy for me. 🙂
This post resonates with me. Just last week I wrote about my own back issues.
I hope you are taking good care of yourself, Sunita. 🙂
Yes of course – with Ganesha around nothing can go wrong can it ?
It is really important to sit in a good posture because most of us sit for a long time at the same posture at the workplace and that stress gives us back pain sometime chronic back pain. Hopefully these tips will help us to take care of our back. I love to follow these tips!