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Commuting and Computing

Office workers at their desks

Moving every 20 minutes can help decrease back pain.

While we’re racking up miles commuting to our jobs, whether we’re a driver or a rider, we’re also wreaking havoc on our spine. But that’s not all. When we get to work, we’re likely doing more sitting in front of our computers, which can cause even more problems.

Pad Your Bank Account Without Punishing Your Back

While working pads our bank account, sitting at our office desk can punish our backs. Fortunately, there are some things you can do to keep your back strong while commuting and computing.

1. Get in proper driving position. Ensure your seat is at the correct height and your ears are aligned with your shoulders. Also, use supportive arm rests to diminish stress put on the body. Use your headrest so your head doesn’t have to lurch forward to keep your focus on the road.

2. Stretch before and after your commute. Just as it’s a good idea to stretch before we exercise, it’s beneficial to stretch for a few minutes before or after a drive to work or a ride on public transportation. Stretching can reduce muscle tension and alleviate the anxiety that may be associated with stressful commutes.

3. Tame the tension. Driving in rush hour traffic can be a tension-inducing experience. As tension is most often felt in the neck and back, consider shrugging your shoulders when stopped at a red light. Get a lumbar support for your back if your seat isn’t comfortable or roll up a sweatshirt or towel and place it between the small of your back and the seat.

4. Be kind to your back. Our backs can take a beating from all that drubbing on the keyboard while in a sitting position. Ensure that your chair provides sufficient lumbar support. Keep your feet firmly planted on the floor and see that your keyboard and monitor are at an ideal height. It’s also a good idea to stand up and move every 20 minutes.

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