Traveling With Your Spine In Mind
There are multiple ways we can put stress on our bodies when we are getting ready for a great trip or vacation. Here are some areas to look out for, and what you can do to avoid potential problems.
Carrying & lifting:
A number of injuries when traveling occur when lifting and/or carrying is involved. Bags need to be moved around (overhead, under seats) and they often get heavier with souvenirs as we move through the places we visit. Try to get rolling luggage whenever possible. Pack lighter and split items into smaller bags that are more easily lifted and stored. Consider using backpacks that distribute weight more evenly along the back instead of shoulder bags that put unbalanced pressure on the body. Use proper lifting technique whenever lifting bags to store. If you have neck/back problems think about checking your bag or asking for help.
Staying in a cramped space for long periods of time is not idea and can put a burden on your body (especially the low back). Try to get up and move around as much as possible. This will keep the blood flowing and help keep muscles from becoming tight. Change the position you are in regularly to avoid too much stress being placed on one part of the body for too long. There are plenty of seated stretches you can do to target muscles that have a tendency to become tight.
Try to get in the proper ergonomic seated position for your body type. You may need to use lumbar supports, seat wedges, and neck pillows. Be sure they do not put you in a bad position that strains the muscles of the neck and back.
Planning a trip can be fun, and stressful. Be sure to take your time. There are bound to be unforeseen problems during the trip. Try to make a plan of how to deal with problems before they arrive. Use deep breathing techniques, and have a “plan of relaxation” for any bumps in the road. Don’t forget your vitamins and supplements!
Remember that this information is for educational purposes only. Seek the advice of a health specialist before making any changes to your healthcare.
Westways “Avoiding a pain in the neck”