Most people know that 80% of Americans suffer from back pain. Unfortunately, our modern day lifestyle and desk-job culture does not contribute to a healthy back. Keep reading to discover five ways your desk contributes to your back pain.
-Chronic Sitting: Our bodies were not designed to sit, and sit and sit and sit all day, everyday. There is a term called, "hypokinetic" disease, which are diseases caused by a sedentary lifestyle. Normally, this roots to issues like diabetes and arthritis caused from a sedentary lifestyle But, chronic is no exception. When we sit all the load is constantly placed on the pelvis, which results in stiffness and pain. Back pain is normally the first indicator that the body has been sitting for too long.
-Sitting Posture: Posture affects our musculature well-being. It sounds easy to say, "Sit up straight and tall." But, there is a reason why holding good posture is difficult. It's hard work and takes lots of concentration. Most people do not realize that our bodies "fight" gravity at all hours of the day. When seated long-term, our posture begins to change because of the gravitational pull on the body. If we lack movement in our life, our posture worsens with time resulting in a "humped back." Poor posture adversely affects back pain. Plus, most people sit with a tucked pelvis which changes the spinal column (deviates neutral spine).
-Emotional Stress: Most people who work a desk job are stressed. Some holistic health practitioners state that of those 80% of Americans that have back pain, 80% of them are causing their back pain from their emotional stress. When we are stressed, our muscles tense. It's part of the "fight or flight" response. Long-term, we learn how to channel our stress to certain areas of the body, most which includes the spinal column and upper back.
-Lack of Energy: Sitting causes a lack of energy. Combined with chronic sitting, the body begins to feel sluggish. Once our posture worsens, combined with a lack of movement, we lose energy. Its a vicious cycle, but the same applies in the opposite realm. When you move you feel better and have more energy. Many people who are tired from staring at a computer all day also experience lack of energy. The spine cannot feel vibrant when the body doesn't move. Breaking through the "lack of energy" barrier is the hardest for most people.
-Desk Job Attire: Most people who work at a desk wears business or business-casual clothing. This mostly affects females, but wearing high-heeled shoes everyday can drastically change our posture. Our bodies adapt to the lines of stress that is placed upon it. High-heeled shoes begin to change the posture of the foot and ankle, leaving it in an unnaturally plantarflexed state. When the feet shifts, our muscle and bones in the legs and back also shift. Generally, the calves become shortened, which flattens the feet. The "collapsed arch" internally rotates the leg bones which tilts the pelvic forward. As a result, this causes a lordotic curve in the spine, which causes back tension long-term.
Elizabeth Rae Kovar M.A. is Author of her memoir, Finding Om and is a Fitness Trainer, Yogi, Reiki Master, Presenter and Lover of Life. To view her portfolio please visit www.elizabethkovar.com