When the temperature dips, we are more likely to experience back pain. The reason for this is that the body naturally tenses up in colder weather. When excess strain is put on muscles, they are more susceptible to injury. While you are more likely to experience back pain in winter than during the warm months of summer, it’s not inevitable.
There are two seemingly unrelated causes of winter back pain: activity and inactivity. Athletes know from experience that they have to spend more time warming up on winter days to give their muscles a chance to loosen up. Sudden activity, even as minor as bending over to pick something up and then using your back muscles to stand up again is enough to cause muscle strain. You might get away with slumping in your chair for hours on end in the summer, but in winter, the poor posture can take its toll and cause back pain.
Beating the Winter Back Pain Blues
Chiropractors report that patients suffering from back pain are often those who have sedentary jobs. While your work may force you to sit in an office chair for most of the day, there are steps you can take to prevent back pain:
- Get up and stretch periodically
- Twist and bend
- Go for a short walk
- Use a lumbar support pillow
Just a minute or two of stretching or walking will help relieve stress in the lower back and will make you able to work more productively. You needn’t practise yoga or Pilates in the office, but if you just get out of your chair, rotate your shoulders and gently twist and bend your back, it will help prevent back injury. A walk to the water cooler will help in two ways. It will give you a break from sitting and drinking water will re-hydrate your body. This is important in winter, because we tend to drink less water than we should when the weather is cold.
Chiropractic and Massage
Regular visits to your chiropractor will help prevent winter backaches. Your chiropractor can use spinal manipulation and recommend exercises for you to follow. If you are experiencing minor back pain, a therapeutic massage can relieve the pain and prevent it from becoming worse, too.
Are you concerned about a niggling winter backache? Contact Petrozzi Wellness Centre’s “Chiro on Call,” John Petrozzi in Leichhardt, and arrange a free 10 to 15 minute conversation. That may be all it will take for you to beat the winter backache blues.