There are several exercises that will help strengthen your lower back. Try these three stretching exercises to help make your back stronger and better toned:
Finally, no matter how comfortable you are at your desk, prolonged, static posture is not good for your back. Try to remember to stand, stretch and walk at least a minute or two every half hour. Moving about and stretching on a regular basis throughout the day will help keep your joints, ligaments, muscles and tendons loose, which in turn will help you feel more comfortable, more relaxed and more productive.
While it’s a natural tendency to want to rest our backs by sitting rather than standing, in many cases it’s bad sitting posture that’s contributing to the problem.
Being mindful of preserving a correct sitting position, keeping core muscles toned to support the spine will help keep your back in its best possible shape.
The enforced lockdown and working from home may mean that you are sitting at your desks for longer periods than normal. Plus, your chair and desk may not be set up as well as your office, so you may be experiencing more discomfort. Whether you experience it as a sharp, searing pain or a dull ache, lower back pain can affect up to 80% of the population at some point in their working life.
Causes of lower back pain when sitting down
Not all back pain is the same, and there are many possible causes.
Upper back pain when sitting
Many people experience pain in their necks and upper backs as a result of craning forward while sitting to look at a computer monitor or phone display. An adult head weights almost 5kgs - nearly the same as a 5litre bottle of water! Now imagine how hard it would be to carry the 5litre bottle of water in front of you with outstretched arms, and whether it would be easier to carry it closer to your body. For every inch your head moves forward from the centre of your body, you add a load of around 11kgs to your neck and back muscles - no wonder they complain when we sit badly in front of a computer or phone screen.
Although it’s tempting to sprawl out and watch television for hours, this can also easily throw your back out of alignment.
That uncomfortable feeling of stiffness when you finally do move or stand up is telling you something.
Home remedies for lower back pain when sitting
In addition to improving your posture when sitting, try these at-home remedies for lower back pain:
With plenty of time on your hands plus the knead to exercise and de-stress, there has never been a better time to make your own bread! (providing you can get hold of flour!) This loaf is made using a ‘poolish’, a yeasted pre-fermentation similar to a sourdough starter that’s classically used in French bread-making. The grains and slow proving create a complex flavour and chewy crust. Recipe makes a 900g loaf
With the prospect 12 weeks at home, here are just a few reasons why you can be better off with a set routine:
Developing and sticking with a routine that is congruent with your goals is one of the surest ways to ensure success. It is also perfectly okay to set aside certain times to do nothing. What matters is that you are conscious and alert to your choices. The next few weeks and months pose differing challenges for us all. Each of us has different goals, needs, desires, and resources. That is why it is essential to decide exactly what you want to achieve then develop your routine around your life.
Next week we will be discussing the benefits of 12 weeks with exercise and healthy living compared to 12 weeks of no exercise nor healthy living!
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