This week is back care awareness week 2015. I will be looking and asking you to participate in back care awareness to raise awareness of the problems back pain can cause as well as prevention and treatments. A main message from the organiser BackCare is to stand and not sit at work. Charity “getBritainstanding.org” encourage active working.
There is recent research below on the advantages of standing at work. It does suggest there are advantages of standing but there are a few cons that I will look at as well. I will examine the advantages of standing or being more active at work to help prevention of problems, and then treatments such as exercises to do to mobilise stretch muscles and strengthen your back. I will also look at other treatments available to help prevent or relieve pain.
This week I want you to be aware of your posture as you work, How long you sit for in the day, posture of your shoulders and lower back. Draw a picture and send it to me.
What is the distance away and height of your computer? If you carry things at work how do you lift them? Think about engageing your core muscles before you lift (message me if you want more on that). Use the stairs at work not the lift. Are you a carer? Do you lift properly?
1) A School in Bradford West Yorkshire took part in a seven week long study with students standing rather than sitting in July 2015 to prevent sedentary behaviour. They compared to a school in Australia and discovered it increased their step count and in class activity levels increasing blood circulation, heart rate and calorie expenditure and additionally showed improvements in behaviour, engagement and academic performance. You can read more about this project here.
2) A 2015 study published in the Oxford Journal of Public Health shows that sit-to-stand desks in classrooms appear to be an effective way of reducing sedentary behaviour (prolonged sitting) in a diverse sample of children.
3) At their 2013 annual meeting, the American Medical Association adopted policy recognizing potential risks of prolonged sitting and encouraging employers, employees and others to make available alternatives to sitting, such as sit-stand desks.
4) A 2011 study published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that when workers are equipped with sit-stand workstations, prolonged sitting is reduced and mood states improve.
5) A 2009 University of Queensland study found that even when adults meet physical activity guidelines, sitting for prolonged periods can compromise metabolic health.
If you stand there are certain postures that will make your lower back pain worse – So if you have a lordotic lower back curve (Ie, postnatal, an excessive pelvis tilt and lower back curve. Don’t lean on one leg, have a moveable chair, keep mobile, still be aware of your shoulders.
So if you are worried about your back at work why not try this stretch?
If you are concerned about your posture come and see me for a posture analysis and I will give you exercises and stretches to help prevent back pain.