Improving Your Back Health

Most adults experience backache from time to time. Often, these aches get worse as we get older, and if you have a physically demanding job, or one the requires a lot of heavy lifting or time on your feet, your aches and pains might kick in earlier and become more intense. Poor posture is another critical cause of backache. Most of us slouch, we sit hunched in chairs, we curve our spines as we walk, and always staring down at a phone screen is never going to improve things.

Image via StockSnap
Image via StockSnap
But, while back pain is frightfully common, it’s not something that you have to live with. You don’t have to be in constant pain. You don’t have to find it hard to get comfortable in bed, and you don’t need to struggle with everyday tasks because your back is in poor health. There is plenty that you can do to help you to improve your back health, giving you the chance to grow old, without having to worry about continual back pain or an unattractively curved spine.

Get to the Cause

The first thing to do is ask yourself why your back hurts. If you have sustained an injury or been involved in an accident that resulted in back trauma, you might need a visit to a car accident chiropractor or a physiotherapist. If you sleep on an old lumpy mattress, it might be time for an upgrade. But, if there’s no apparent cause for your pain, it’s probably down to poor posture.

Exercise

Many of us are guilty of focusing our exercise regimes on the parts of us that we want to change, or the parts that we like. You might spend hours trying to tone your stomach muscles or glutes, neglecting essential areas, like your back in the process. But, your back needs strengthening. Your back works hard every day, holding you up, and a toned and tight back is part of your core. It will help your waist look smaller and more toned. Running and swimming are great for back strength, as long as you hold it straight. Pilates and yoga can offer excellent strength training, and certain weights can be good for your back. Ask a trainer for help if you aren’t sure.

Correct Yourself

Making changes to your posture isn’t easy. Especially if you’ve always had poor posture, your back has gotten used to its poor position, and suddenly standing straight will hurt for a while. It’s easy to fall back into bad habits, so get used to correcting yourself. Regularly throughout the day, check your posture. Pull your tummy in and your shoulders back and down, stick your chin up and stop looking at the floor. You may find that walking with your hands clasped behind your back helps.

Move

If you are on your feet a lot, try to take regular breaks to sit down. If you sit at a desk all day, take frequent breaks to stand up and walk around. Do a few basic back stretches while you are up, and try to never stay in the same position, either sitting or standing for too long.

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