Many desk workers, students, and those spending time in the car, have experienced low back pain after prolonged periods of sitting. This generally occurs as we fatigue and fall out of good postural habits. As explained in previous posts, good posture allows the centre of gravity to fall through the most ideal positions in a joint, creating minimal stress on the joints, ligaments and muscles throughout the body. If this line of gravity falls away from this ideal position, it increases the stress at the joint and the surrounding muscles and ligaments. We may begin to feel pain when this stress is maintained over a prolonged time, or if the force placed on these joints is great enough. The muscles and ligaments around these joints may continually work to try to maintain good posture and may also create pain as they fatigue and create tension.
Many people within the workplace use a lumbar roll or other support aids, especially if they have experienced low back pain in the past. But what do they actually do, and why would you use one?
A lumbar roll is a cushion or support that enables you to maintain the natural curve in the lower spine when seated. This allows the line of gravity to continue to fall in an optimal position through the joint, meaning that there is less stress placed on the joints, muscles and ligaments and less energy is exerted to keep “good posture”.
A lumbar supports effects are not limited to the lower spine. It may also affect the neck and mid back as the change in one area of the spinal curve will affect the areas above and below. When you slouch, you can feel the effects on the whole spine, pelvis and hips as the whole body rolls forward. This can create pain in the mid and upper back, as well as result in headaches and hip pain. It can also negatively affect the nervous and digestive systems as the nerves and organs are compressed. So by reinforcing the natural lordotic curve in the lower spine, you positively affect the curves in the entire spine as well as the head, pelvis and hips and improve the function of all the systems within the body. In turn, this allows the body to use less energy to maintain good posture, keeping the line of gravity in an optimal position throughout the joints and cause less stress on the body.
How can the team at Beyond help to reduce low back pain and help maintain good posture within the workplace?
The team at Beyond can provide you with the tools to create and maintain good posture within the workplace. Our Osteopaths, Myotherapists and Remedial Massage Therapists will work with you to help reduce the tension between the muscles and joints to realign the body and establish its ideal posture. We will then work with you to continue to maintain or improve your posture by providing you with stretches, exercises and possible lifestyle changes. We will also provide you with information regarding occupational ergonomics. If you spend much of the day seated, at a desk or in the car, then a lumbar support may also help you maintain an ideal posture throughout the day. Let the team at Beyond provide you with the tools to help you MOVE THROUGH LIFE!