As most of you are reading this, it is highly probable that you are slumping!
If you are one of the few who are not, you deserve thorough congratulations and fall into a category of less than 1%.
Most people have bad posture – whether you are sitting at a desk and PC, whether you are on the road driving or whether you are doing physical work- plastering, electrics etc
Many of us sit for long periods each day and each week. It forms the majority of our work, leisure and travel.
By the time we add up how many hours we sit at work, commuting each way, plus sitting for leisure- at the movies, playing computer games, in the pub, out to dinner, the length of time is staggering.
The problem is sitting places a lot of pressure on the back and neck. On top of that sitting badly places even more pressure on the discs, ligaments and tendons of the spine. This is exacerbated because not many of us sit correctly when we do sit.
Statistics from Work Foundation reveal absences from work with back and neck pain cost about £7.6 billion a year. Also an Federation of Small Business survey showed that back pain was responsible for 5th of all sickness absences in small to medium size businesses.
Anyone who has experienced the agony of back pain or sciatica knows prevention is far better than the cure and when there are a few simple things you can do each day
The physiotherapists at Body in Motion say there is a 4 step process to maintaining a pain free work day:
1) It is important to get the basic ergonomics correct firstly.
Check your feet are flat on the floor or a foot rest. Check your chair has lumbar support and can be pushed all the way in. Your computer screen should be at eye level and the keyboard and mouse easily reachable without having to stretch or left your arms forward.
You must be able to do your work comfortably in an upright posture with your head and spine aligned.
2) Take regular breaks to stand up and stretch.
It is important to change your position at least every hour every if you just stand up for 30 seconds move your neck, arms and back then sit down again in the correct posture. This encourages normal circulation in the muscles, re hydrates your spinal discs and keeps the joints mobile.
3) Keep fit.
If you have strong muscles in your spine and core, you will be able to sit upright with good posture without collapsing in a slouched position due to fatigue. In the gym, look for exercises that work your back like rowing, reverse flys, chin ups or lat pull downs.
Also do a good core workout on the stability ball. Classes like kettle bells, yoga and pilates help correct posture on an ongoing basis.
4) Get treatment early.
If you do have neck pain, headaches or back ache, do see a physiotherapist to treat the area as soon as possible. Any ache or pain is a sign of some damage in the body. It is easier to treat the pain if it has not become serious. If a person ignores the pain for months, other muscles, and joints start to compensate and the problem can become serious. Even if you just have a few aches and pains, simple sports massage does wonders for preventing major problems developing, restoring normal muscle length and aiding good posture.
Please contact us immediately if:
You would like an ergonomic assessment at work
You would like back or neck treatment for you or your staff on site or off site
You would like a presentation on back care in the office
You would like “back class”/”fit for business class on site”