Spine Precautions and Postural Training for your Back
Adopting a spine-friendly posture, combined with properly trained back and abdominal muscles, reduces the load on your spine which can help alleviate pain. Postural training can help prevent the progression specially with degenerative spine disorders.
Carrying heavy objects
Never carry a heavy object on one side. Instead, distribute the weight evenly on both sides.
Avoid carrying heavy weight for long periods.
If you have back pain, avoid lifting or carrying heavy objects (more than 10-20 lbs)
Sit upright in a suitable chair with your knees bent at the same angle as your hips with the soles of the feet flat on the floor, or if necessary, on a footstool.
Your pelvis should be right at the back of the chair, while your body from the waist upwards should be upright.
Activities on the floor
It will be easier and more comfortable if you support yourself on your hands and knees rather than sitting on your legs and thighs.
Try to maintain keeping your back straight.
Getting up from a chair
Keep your back upright from the waist up.
Bend from your hips and move your body forward from the chair.
Push up and extend from your hips and knees at the same time.
Working in a standing position
Ensure that your back is in an upright position.
Aim to have an elbow height working surface by either raising the surface you stand on or increasing the working surface height.
Sit in a relaxed position with your arms slightly bent.
Sit back against the seat keeping your spine erect, and your pelvis at the back of the car seat.
Your legs should be comfortably extended while using the pedals.
Sitting at a table or desk
Sit close to the table.
Ensure that the chair is not too high to avoid bending forwards.
You may find it useful to have a surface that is inclined at a 15 degree angle.
Get up regularly to stretch if you have to sit at prolonged periods.
Picking up objects
When you have to pick up something up, do not bend over forwards.
Bend your knees and hips while keeping your back straight, with your legs slightly apart.
Hold the object close to your body and stand up by stretching and extending your knees and hips.
Avoid picking up things suddenly or turning around while you do so.
Stand in an active and erect position.
Do not slouch, letting your weight hang on your joints and ligaments.
Getting up from a lying position
Bend both legs, place both hands on your chest and raise your head.
Then simultaneously turn your head, your shoulders, and your knees towards the edge of the bed, and use both arms to push yourself up in a sitting position.
Lie on a flat surface that is not too soft. Your position should be comfortable and relaxing as much as possible.
If possible, sleep with only a small pillow at the back of your head.
To help relieve stress on the lumbar region, you place a cushion under your knees. It is not advisable to lie on your stomach.
Focus on core and abdominal exercises. Strengthening your core does not mean you have to perform abdominal crunches. Core exercises involves more hip movement, leg lifts, and tightening your abdominal muscles such as maintaining a plank position.
Pool activities are highly recommended. There is less weight transmitted to your spine while in a pool. Simple activities such as walking while inside the pool will help you build muscle strength.