Most adults (about 80%) complain of back and spinal pain. The fact that we spend more and more time behind the wheel is one of the reasons for this. Diseases can appear not only during long, many-hour trips with truck drivers, but also among people who choose a car trip, and those who drive a car every day, even for short distances. Therefore, you should know how to avoid pain.
When sitting, the spine is in a state of static load, the effect of which is exacerbated by vehicle vibrations and immobility. The distribution of forces stabilizing the back changes, and the load goes to the elements of passive stabilization - ligaments, joint bags, skin. These extremely sensitive structures can lead to severe pain under adverse conditions. To prevent this, especially during long tourist trips, you need to plan your trip well.
It is also worth noting that this problem is also encountered by truckers, despite the fact that their cars are usually equipped with professional seats that soften dynamic loads. The purchase of special vehicles involves a thorough check of the driver's seat for ergonomics. Since this is not only comfort, but also concern for the health of the driver.
Adjust the chair
Its back should be in a vertical position (this also affects the safety when driving a car). The angle of inclination depends individually on the shape of the body, and hence the spine. The back in its name contains the essence of its function - it should support the body in its most natural position, and provide comfort.
Modern cars have a seat shape correction system for the driver’s body. It is necessary to use them so that the body is supported by them as much as possible. This is possible when the position of the backrest is vertical, and the bulges on it are placed so as to support the spine and lumbar spine, and the headrest controls the position of the head.
Everything you need while driving should be at hand. Seat belts to a large extent limit the mobility of the body, the inclinations and turns of the body pass with almost immovable hips, which increases the load on the spine.
Some drivers use various devices to improve their comfort while traveling. The meaning of their use depends on whether they help a person, and whether there are any contraindications for their use. Rollers under the spine, beads on a chair or cushions under the neck - this should be used with caution and not because colleagues use it, so do I.
Sit in and out correctly
First, sit sideways on the seat, then leaning your hands on the seat cushions, turn around and place your legs inside the car. It is worthwhile to enter and exit calmly without making sudden movements.
During a long trip, you should take breaks and devote them to exercises and stretching. Self-kneading of the muscles of the neck and shoulders is also good.
Even if the temptation to quickly arrive at the place is big - take rest breaks! Roughnesses of the road surface, vibration of the car, concentration on driving - these are the maximum loads of the body and as a result its fatigue.
Take things out of the trunk correctly
When removing suitcases and bags from the trunk, first bend to the edge of the trunk and only then lift and remove. When stacking weights in the trunk, move them across the floor. Keep in mind the most direct posture of the body, and if there is such a need, spread your legs wide to distribute the load on the whole body.
If you experience pain while riding
If you feel any discomfort while traveling, stop the machine. If possible, go out and try to massage your hand with the place where you feel pain. Knead this place with your thumb, while breathing in moderation freely, without straining the body.
If the pain becomes so strong that it is impossible to drive, stop in a safe place, where it will be possible to accommodate in a comfortable position. This often helps reduce pain.
If driving is accompanied by pain, it is necessary to consult a doctor or physiotherapist who will select the appropriate exercises for independent performance at home.
During the trip it is worth taking a break from time to time. A few simple exercises will allow you to keep your spine in good shape even during a long journey. Here are some examples of exercises:
1. Put your foot on the open trunk, bench, etc. Lean forward by gently pressing on the hip.
2. Stand straight. Take the foot of one leg and pull it to the buttocks. Hip and knee should be on the same line. Wait 5-10 seconds. Have a rest. Do the same with the other leg. Repeat 5 times. The exercise is done correctly if you feel tension in the thigh muscles.
How to get rid of back pain
Back pain has become the scourge of many people whose work is associated with a sedentary or sedentary lifestyle. But the problem is compounded when a person gets behind the wheel of a truck. Truckers do not just sit in one place, at the table, they do not do clerical work, they drive trucks. Sometimes they cannot take even a short break to stretch their muscles, walk, or relax. *
* An example with truckers, in our opinion, is the most colorful of all. If the following tips help heavy truck drivers stay toned and not lose their health, they will help you, no matter what type of activity you are involved in.
It is hardly a surprise to you that the profession of trucker in many countries of the world, including Russia, is in the Top 10 most dangerous professions. One of the important components of the danger of this work is the high level of injuries. Risk of accidents, often lack of ability to eat normally, stress, sedentary lifestyle. All these are bricks in the wall of future health problems, and in especially neglected cases, and disability.
In other activities, back pain can be attributed to the consequences of physical exertion, but for truckers, these are real professional risks. That is why it is so important for truckers (and all people with a sedentary lifestyle) to adhere to certain rules that will help maintain healthy back and spine.
According to the researchers, the most common diseases associated with driving while driving consist of the following problems: musculoskeletal disorders, pain in the neck, shoulders, and back, the latter being the most common ailment.
The most common risk factors are well known to every trucker, they most often cause back pain:
prolonged posture in the same position,
shaking and vibration
lifting or lifting heavy objects weighing more than 20 kg.
Just keeping a straight back and neck during the day will not work, it will tire very quickly, begin to distract from the road and aggravate pain in the neck and back. It’s much better and more productive, as doctors advise, to properly adjust the chair for yourself, this is the first advice and one of the main in this guide.
1. Put your feet on the floor and begin to adjust the height of the seat until your knees are bent at an angle of 90 degrees. The knees should not be higher than the hips.
2. Obtain a lumbar support for the seat. He will be able to provide comfort and the proper level of support. Good lumbar support minimizes stoop and softens the effects of vibration and shaking.
3. It is very important to correctly adjust the seat.
The back should snug against the seat.
Adjust the seat to the pedals: depress the brake pedal with your right foot all the way and fully depress the clutch pedal. In this position, adjust the seat so that your knees are slightly bent, approximately at an angle of 120 degrees.
The hips should be placed so that you feel comfortable with this fit.
Adjust the tilt of the seatback, it should be slightly folded back. If you put the back upright, this will create excessive pressure on the spine and the position of the head will become uncomfortable, it will be located too high.
You can check the correct adjustment of the backrest: put your wrist on top of the steering wheel. In the correct position, you will have the opportunity to wrap your hand around the steering wheel on the other side, without tearing the vanes off the seat. The arm is extended, but not too extended.
In trucks, where horizontal handlebars are mainly used, checking the position this way will not work. In this case, you need to take the far side of the steering wheel with your hand. If the elbow is not fully extended, and the shoulder blade does not come off the seat.
4. Tall drivers will be better off tilting the base of the seat so that the front of the seat aligns with the knees. Also, when driving conditions require frequent use of the clutch, drivers can lower the front of the seat base for convenience.
5. A pneumatic seat helps absorb the vibration of the cab while driving. On cars, there is no such function, it is performed by the suspension itself.
6. The steering wheel should be adjusted (if possible), in such a way that the driver’s hands easily rested at the 10 and 2 o’clock position. The elbows are slightly bent and brought closer to the body.
7. Mirrors should be adjusted so that for a good view they do not have to bend and make extra body movements, turn their heads, and the whole situation should be reflected in the plane of the right and left mirrors.
While back pain is a problem for many people whose work involves a sedentary activity, suffering is aggravated when a person is driving a truck.
In addition to the settings made, if you spend a lot of time behind the wheel, a good step would be to buy specialized clothing to support your back, which will improve posture and prevent future problems. For example, clothing brand Alignmed.
In the United States, such truckers and shirts are already used by local truckers, and in some large companies they have become an obligatory form of codec.
The essence of the action of clothes is simple and effective, it tightly fits the body and pulls the shoulders back, correcting the flaws of incorrect posture, the muscles cease to constrain, the nervous system improves oxygen metabolism.
Of course, any person who has experienced severe back pain should consult a doctor and undergo the prescribed course of treatment if necessary. If he does not want complications.
But the most important thing for any person who has encountered a beginning back pain (or who does not want to deal with it) is to lead an active and healthy lifestyle. Nothing will support your back and tone your spine as well as your own muscle corset. Strength training two to three times a week (from 40 minutes to 1 hour) will develop the necessary muscles, improve posture and give vitality and health.
Several times a day, before and after the flight, do a light warm-up. * The type of one that in the old days in the morning could be heard on the radio. Lunges, swings, squats, circular movements of the arms or rotation of the body, the list goes on and on.
* Ideally, it is best carried out during the day, for example, before dinner.
All these simple and simple exercises will not take much time, but will also have a very positive effect on your well-being. 10-15 minutes, and again you can drive.
And finally. These simple tips really work. The main thing is habit. Make it a rule to play sports or at least warm up. Set your driving position correctly. It will take some time to get used to the correct landing. But in the end, the right habit will save you from further health problems.
How to avoid back pain
Some tips to avoid back pain:
- It is important not to stoop while driving, but it is advisable to always have a straight back. Stooping while driving significantly increases the risk of harming the spine.
- You must get into the car correctly, first at the back of the thigh. First you need to sit in a chair on the buttocks, and then put your legs in the salon. Some people get into the car wrong. First, put your foot in the salon and hold the wheel with your hand, and then sit in the chair. In this case, there is a large load on the lumbosacral junction of the spine and pain may occur.
- It is recommended to adjust the armrests. The upper armrest should be located so that it is not located below eye level, while not above the top of the head. Its inclination should be about 2 cm from the head.
- Correct seat adjustment. The chair must be moved so that the knees are bent at an angle of 120 degrees. The elbows should be bent at the same angle, while the hands should hold the steering wheel.
- The right pose. Sitting behind the wheel is necessary directly, but not lounging in an armchair, because such a pose harms the spine. Due to the fact that the carotid arteries overlap, rapid fatigue of the body occurs, and vision may decrease.
Important for the health of the back is proper nutrition. It is recommended to consume not a large amount of salt, not to get involved in spicy foods, fatty and fried foods.
Important! Drinking a large amount of coffee does not allow calcium to be absorbed, so it is necessary to replace this drink with herbal tea or juice. Some herbs are good for back health: linden, hawthorn, dog rose, infusion of valerian root.
The diet should have fermented milk products, as well as fruits, vegetables, nuts and various cereals. For example, juice from grapefruit will help to remove excess fluid from the body, and this prevents the deposition of salts.
Exercises to reduce back pain
Gymnastics can be performed while driving, some of the following exercises:
- the lumbar spine should be pressed as hard as possible to the back of the chair, and then relax. Perform for 29 seconds about 11 times,
- perform shoulder movements up and down about 10 times. Such gymnastics will improve blood circulation in the vessels of the neck and head.
- you need to stretch your neck up as much as possible, and then relax, but do not lower your chin. Do about 7 times. Performing this exercise will relax the muscles of the cervical spine.
Driving can cause osteochondrosis or scoliosis. It is recommended to maintain daily elasticity of the spine and its mobility, for this you can use a special set of exercises and lead a healthy lifestyle.