Before DrivingPrevention is the best way to decrease back pain when driving. The following precautions are recommended:
- Think about getting helpful sitting aids/lumbar support cushions, like memory foam and air-filled seat cushions.
- If specifically dealing with tailbone pain, a support with a tailbone cutout is recommended.
- Optimize the seat by placing the back a little beyond fully upright. From 100 to 105-110 degrees, so the individual maintains proper posture. Inclining more can lead to a forward-head posture that can cause neck pain.
- Driving ergonomics need to be incorporated.
- The seat should be close enough to the steering wheel to provide a relaxed upper body posture. However, make sure that the legs are not to close to the steering wheel and there is room to maneuver. The seat should be level around 5 degrees upward to provide support to the legs.
- If unable to provide lumbar support rolling up a towel/thick sweater etc can be placed in the small of the back providing a quick fix.
The DriveEyes on the road and hands at 10 and 2 but don’t take the focus off the spine.
- If driving for more than 20 minutes, it is recommended to make adjustments/changes in the seated position. Just a slight tweak can reduce the driving forces on the spine.
- Driving for longer than an hour then short breaks are necessary. Pit stops are spine savers. Just like work breaks that involve standing, walking around, and stretching out, bending forward and leaning backward will keep the spine flexible, uncompressed with optimal blood flow.
- Heated seats can help soothe tight back muscles. It acts as a heating pad.
- Remove items from pockets, especially wallets or similar objects in the back pocket. This can lead to an asymmetrical position that leads to shifting weight/stress loads to one side creating an added strain on the spine and awkward postures.
StoppingAfter driving for an extended period, resting is vital to spine health. Utilize time out of the vehicle to continue prevention.
- Sitting right after driving is not recommended.
- Right after driving the body needs to move after being in the static driving/passenger position for some time.
- Standing, walking, and doing some gentle stretches are recommended. Back extensions and side bending are examples.
- Core exercises can help and should also be incorporated into a regular physical exercise regimen.
- However, exercises after long or strenuous drives when the body is fatigued are not recommended, as intense exercise can lead to injury or worsening of back pain.