Home » Is WFH giving you back pain? Here’s how to reverse it!

Is WFH giving you back pain? Here’s how to reverse it!

How is your experience working remotely going? While you may be excited about the opportunity to work from home, the switch is not without its own set of challenges. Here are some suggestions from experts to help you stay pain-free when working from home.
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Since the pandemic, remote and hybrid work has become standard practice in many companies. A hybrid workplace culture combines online and offline tasks. One of the biggest benefits of a hybrid model is that you can work when you are most productive. You’re not tied to a 9-to-5 workday. Long commutes and expensive childcare are no longer a necessity.

However, there are some issues with telecommuting that need to be addressed. Let’s think for a moment about what those are:

  • You aren’t moving around the office looking for amenities, or walking to and from the train station or the office. If you work on the couch or bed at home, this is unlikely to happen.
  • Sitting in bed with your legs outstretched can lead to injury in the intervertebral disks. The loss of the natural curvature of the spine in this position can result in back pain.
  • As you begin to associate the bedroom with work rather than relaxation, your sleep and sex life will become disturbed.

Here are a few pain remedy ideas to make your go-to workspace more gentle on your lower back

1. Get up and move around every 30 minutes, to avoid back pain!

Every half hour or so, take a brief break. Take your gaze away from the screen and fix it on something in the distance. If walking is impossible, stand, stretch, and do simple stretches at your desk.

To get started, follow along with the video below:

2. Build a standing desk 

Instead of alternating between sitting in bed or on the sofa, you can use a high surface such as a sideboard or kitchen countertop as a standing desk. When typing, keep your shoulders relaxed by placing books or a sturdy box so that the keyboard is at elbow height. When looking straight ahead, your gaze should naturally focus on the top third of the screen.

3. Avoid sitting criss-cross-applesauce!

Your sciatic nerve is put under a lot of tension if you routinely sit cross-legged with your laptop on your lap. This nerve travels down each leg from your lower back. If you spend a lot of time sitting in this position, it’s critical to give your hamstring and calf stretching exercises top priority.

Here’s the best way to relax those and soothe the sciatic nerve:

4. Give yourself enough back support!

Your back should extend all the way to touch the chair’s back in an upright position. If there is a bit of room, use a lumbar pillow to cushion yourself while stopping you from falling either forward or backward into poor posture.

5. Practice Progressive Muscle Relaxation!

Lay flat on the floor for 15 to 20 minutes each day with a book under your head to allow your spine to realign and counteract some of the negative effects of bed while working on your posture.

Progressive muscular relaxation is a useful technique to overcome the harmful consequences of bad posture brought on by sitting in bed while working. How to use this approach in your practice is explained in detail here:

  1. Find a quiet and comfortable space in your home, preferably on a flat surface such as the floor or a yoga mat.
  2. Lie down on your back, ensuring that your body is fully supported and relaxed.
  3. Place a book or a small pillow under your head to provide a slight elevation, allowing your spine to align naturally.
  4. Close your eyes and take deep breaths in order to relax your mind, for the mind controls the body.

Follow the guided progressive muscle relaxation session brought to you by My Fat Diet. Focus on one muscle group at a time.

6. Try some leg lifts!

Your hip flexor muscles, which are found in the front of the hip, can become shorter if you consistently sit hunched over, whether at your desk at work or on the couch at home. Pain or discomfort may arise from this frequently. However, performing leg lifts can help alleviate this issue and keep your hips limber throughout the day. Here’s a step-by-step guide to performing leg lifts:

Remember to perform leg lifts with controlled and deliberate movements, paying attention to your body’s limits. If you experience any discomfort or pain, it’s advisable to consult a healthcare professional or a qualified fitness instructor for further guidance.

7. Strengthen Your Core!

Your core is involved in many everyday movements, including those made while working from home, whether you’re typing on a keyboard or lifting a laundry basket. Such actions frequently go unnoticed until they are difficult or uncomfortable.

It’s crucial to prioritize exercises that target your core to lengthen, loosen, and strengthen your back muscles. By doing so, you provide essential support and protection for your spine during prolonged periods of work-from-home activities. Get started right away with David to engage your core and promote a healthier back and overall well-being.

8. Adjust your sitting position!

If you work in an office, you often have limited seating options, primarily confined to your desk chair. However, when working from home, a dining room chair is likely the closest alternative to an ergonomic office chair. To promote good posture and support your back, here’s a step-by-step guide for sitting correctly in a chair at home:

  1. Choose a chair with a straight back that provides adequate support to your spine.
  2. Position the chair in a way that allows your feet to comfortably rest flat on the floor.
  3. If your feet don’t reach the floor, use a footstool or a block to support the bottom of your feet. This helps in maintaining proper alignment and reducing strain on your lower back.
  4. Sit with your back straight against the backrest of the chair, avoiding slouching or leaning forward excessively.
  5. Double-check to see if your hips are slightly higher than your knees. Adjust the height of your chair or use a cushion if needed.
  6. Relax your shoulders and keep them in a natural, neutral position.
  7. Maintain a slight gap between the back of your knees and the edge of the chair.
  8. Avoid crossing your legs, as it can negatively impact circulation and lead to discomfort.
  9. Your back will be more strained if you dangle your feet from the back of the chair.
  10. Take short breaks periodically to stand up, stretch, and walk around to promote blood circulation and reduce stiffness.

By following these step-by-step instructions, you can optimize your seated posture and minimize strain on your back while working from home. Remember, maintaining proper ergonomics is crucial for long-term comfort and overall well-being.

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