You’re just chugging along on your route just fine until rush hour traffic hits. Then to make things worse your back pain starts to flare up, so you’re distracted by annoying aches and pinches while slowly moving forward in bumper to bumper traffic. Maybe you try to stay positive, but in reality, you’re worried about your back pain keeping you up all night.
Don’t let back pain be the monster that ruins your trip! Learn how to stop and prevent it from flaring up with our helpful back soothing tips.
Stop & Prevent Back Pain
One major cause of back pain is sitting still for too long. The vertebrae in your lower spine get compressed together and start to ache. Also, while sitting you sciatic nerve that runs down your back under your butt can get pinched, causing pain.
Now you may be wondering what you can possibly do to prevent back pain when your job involves sitting for 10 hours are more, but don’t worry, there are a lot of solutions.
The first step towards preventing back pain is looking at your posture. Your seat shouldn’t be so far back that you have to hunch over forward to reach the wheel. Keep your seat forward, but not too close to the wheel and keep it back, slightly passed a 90-degree angle. Then make sure that you’re leaning back in a relaxed position with your arms resting on your arm rests. By being relaxed you’ll be putting less strain on your butt and core to hold up your weight.
It’s not good to sit still in the same position all day, so make subtle adjustments to your seat every 45 minutes to the hour to engage different areas of your muscles, and to give other areas time to rest.
Keep in mind that your bottom, back, abs, and basically your entire core are responsible for holding up your weight and stabilizing it. This means that every muscle involved needs to be strong enough to do their job. Consider doing some exercises at night when you’re parked. There are tons of ab, glute, and back strengthening activities that don’t require much room to do.
You may want to consider adopting a healthier lifestyle to burn some of the weight your body has to support. Making simple changes like drinking plain black coffee or iced green tea instead of sugary sodas and eating fruit instead of processed snacks can put you on the right track towards dropping some weight. Also, try to walk whenever you can. Lap your truck a few times or hoof it around the truckstop to burn some calories.
Remember that water is your sugar and calorie free friend. Not only is it a healthy choice, but it’s extremely hydrating. By being hydrated you can avoid the ill effects of dehydration which include muscle fatigue and cramps.
Never forget to stretch, every morning when you wake up, and every night after you’ve parked. It’s important to stretch and warm up your muscles for their task ahead and to relieve them after a hard day of work.
There are many yoga stretches like the child’s pose and downward facing dog that do wonders for the back. However, the best thing you can do is pop a squat. Hunching over your knees and letting your bum hang down allows your vertebrae to decompress.
Along with stretching try to relax. Stress can lead to a number of problems, including tensed, tight muscles. Freaking out over a traffic jam or the truck stop running out of parking can be frustrating, but try to stay calm for your back’s sake. Yoga can be a calming practice that combines both relaxing and stretching, so it’s definitely worth checking out.
If your back is giving you grief you can always enhance your seat. Try getting a heated seat cover or something that provides lumbar support. Heck, you spend more time in that chair than any other one, so why not make it comfortable and supportive
At night, if you can’t get relief try soothing your back pain with over the counter painkillers, like Advil. You can also try icing your back or applying a gel or patch that heats and cools the area, like icy hot.
Keep on Truckin’ Pain-Free
Back pain doesn’t have to end your career, by making a few changes to your seat and daily routine you can totally knock out your pain to sit pretty. However, if problems do persist for more than a few days you should consult with your doctor.
For more trucking tips visit ExpressTruckTax.com and please share your comments about relieving back pain in the comment section below.
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