Battle Back pain while working at home

3 hacks for avoiding back pain while working at home

We say it all the time, there's no such thing as good posture or bad posture.  Any position, if maintained for too long, will eventually start to irritate the tissues that are subject to the most force in said position.  This leads to many of our catchphrases like "your best posture is your next posture" or "if you aren't moving, you aren't improving."

But how do we incorporate movement when we're stuck at a desk all day? Particularly an at home workstation that was never intended to be your primary rear end residence for a full day.  Here are the 3 ways we suggest you move things around to decrease the strain on your back and body.

1) Move yourself in your chair.  We love the "slouch/overcorrect" exercise as taught by Robin McKenzie that we prescribe to patients with back and neck pains. Think of it like a seated Cat/camel.  In your chair, let yourself slouch (round your spine forwards) for a few seconds, then overcorrect your posture as much as possible (arch backwards) and hold that for a few seconds. Go back and forth for 8-15 repetitions.  This can be done anytime and is a great way to inject some spinal movement into a sedentary workstation.

2)Move your workstation itself.  In the office this may mean a sit to stand desk.  If you don't have such a luxury at home, change where you're doing your work from day to day or even hour to hour.  Spend the morning at the dining table.  After lunch take your laptop/tablet to a higher island or the top of a chest of drawers. If you have to work late, try typing out some emails while laying on stomach in bed.  If you don't allow your body to experience the same forces all day, your tissues won't get overloaded.

3)Move your visual focus.  This one is especially important if you're taking multiple video calls daily.  Most of us now have a webcam embedded in our Computer, laptop, or tablet.  But if you're getting sore and stiff during video conferencing, pay close attention to where you have to focus your eyes.  Something as simple as downloading an app to turn your smartphone into a webcam and placing it higher can take a lot of stress off your neck.  If you have a separate webcam, make sure it's above your eyes when sitting with upright posture.  It will help your neck and upper back, and as an added bonus, it will help get rid of those double chins.

If you have questions on these or any other options for mitigating body pains at your work station, check out our social media or give us a call!

Author
Dr. Todd Peterson, DC, Cert MDT. Dr. Todd Peterson Dr. Todd Peterson is a chiropractor and certified provider for Mechanical Diagnosis & Therapy (MDT, aka the McKenzie Method). Dr. Peterson played football at the University of Nebraska, where he was a 4 year letter winner and Academic All American. He briefly played professional football in 2009 before returning to Chiropractic School in 2010. He earned his doctor of chiropractic (DC) degree from National University of Health Sciences in 2013, graduating with Magna Cum Laude honors.

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