Our spine consists of three parts namely the cervical spine, thoracic spine and the lumbar spine. These different parts bear the grunt of our weight and are totally defenceless to injuries and strains. However, there are ways to protect our spine by taking note of the following.
Doing regular back stretches correctly is crucial to the protection of the spine. Stretching relaxes the back and helps the body to recover properly and tone up. Stretching can help ease tension and keep the spine in the most comfortable position.
Exercising helps to strengthen the back muscles which in turn will help to provide an even better support to the spine. Always try to stand upright and sit upright in the right posture as poor posture will put a huge amount of strain on the spine.
Always make sure that ergonomic sitting is done in your office. Make sure that the backrest of your chair is tilted in a slightly reclined position. Both of your feet must be firmly on the ground. Move the monitor screen so that the centre is level with your eye so as to prevent any strain to the cervical spine.
A proper good night’s sleep will ensure you wake up with full energy and totally refreshed and relaxed. However, most of us wake up with a stiff neck or back. What could have caused it? The sleeping posture might be wrong. You should always aim to sleep in a position that supports the spine and always avoid sleeping on your stomach.
Avoid bending forward from the waist
Always try to avoid bending forward from your waist. If necessary, try to bend forward at your knees and hips as bending at the waist will increase the chances of you fracturing your spine.
Avoid sit ups
Sit ups are an exercise that many of us do on a regular basis. However, sit ups promote poor posture, injures our spine, strengthens our abdominal muscles but add stress on our lumbar spine due to the hunchback position. Instead of sit ups, do a basic abdominal exercise but bending only one of your leg and keeping the other straight. Always place a small pillow under your head to provide support to your back.
Don’t carry heavy packages
If you have an existing back problem, you should never carry something that weighs more than 4kg. However for others that needs to carry heavy things due to work, always remember to lift heavy things using the correct posture. Always kneel on one of your knees and bring the item to your waist level. Use the abdominal muscles to support your back and breathe out and lift up the item at the same time.
Our spine is very fragile and is easily injured. Always make sure that you are not doing activities that will put tremendous stress and pressure on it and always protect it.