13 Ways To Deal With Back Pain At The Workplace

Back pain is inevitable. Perhaps this is not the most positive of ways you can’t start an article, but it’s true nonetheless.

Now, of course, how severe and how durable it is hangs on many factors. These factors all boil down to your genetics, the physical shape you are in, and you’re a general lifestyle.

However, remember that the back (i.e. spine) is a very complex part of your body, and so, not every type of back pain is the same.

For example, you can have pain the thoracic section (between the shoulder blades), near your pelvis, your lower back, or even a stiff neck.

Continuing with this, one of the most common causes of back pain is just sitting all day in the office, with atrocious posture. Sitting with poor posture for months on end, every day, can really mess up your back.

And this can all lead to very severe bouts of back pain. So severe, in fact, that you may even become incapable of performing your duties as an employee (but this goes for CEOs as well). Essentially, you should do everything you can to try and prevent this from happening to you, and to the people who work for you.

And all this is, of course, important health wise. But, it also influences your bottom line. Chronic back pain will get some of your employees to miss work, and will make them much less productive if they even reach the office.

So without further ado, check out all the great tips on how to prevent back pain from occurring.

1. Standing Desks Are All The Rage Now

Sitting can place more pressure on your lower back than standing does. So, it is very important that your employees have the option of standing while working. The best option is to change between standing and sitting while working.

Standing workstations don’t take up much of your office space. There is a benefit to your employees’ health, so they should definitely be a part of your office furniture.

2. Posture Is Everything

Keeping your back straight, and being mindful of your posture is very important when you want to regulate back pain. First, have your backrest on the backrest of your chair when you are sitting. The spine should be straight, the shoulders relaxed. Thighs are to be supported by the knees, which are placed 90 degrees in relation to the floor. Do not slouch, bend forward, and try to avoid rounding your shoulders. Also keep your elbows in the same line as your wrists are.

There is a very simple way to figure out how to stand correctly. Stand up, and keep your back pressed against the wall. Place your feet around 10 to 15 centimeters away from the wall. Push your head, shoulders and mid back to the wall. Then, tighten your abs. This is a very good representation of what good posture looks like.

3. Mobile and Moving Desks

Offering your employees standing workstations is a great option. Switching from sitting to standing and the other way around is great for your back. However, what if your employees aren’t that keen on using the standing desks? Try moving desks.

By installing moving desks, you are forcing your employees to change positions which does wonders for their back and prevents back pains. Moving desks automatically fall down and rise up to force people to stretch their legs and back.

4. Post Posters On How To Lift Things

Lifting heavy objects is not really a part of everyday routine around the office. Still, it makes it even more dangerous, because when such a thing occurs, people are not ready for it.

There are bad ways and the proper ways to lift things. Hang posters with proper ways to lift objects, because it will prevent a lot of injuries and back pain.

5. Encourage Yoga At Home And At The Office

Yoga has many benefits on the human body and mind and it does wonders for your back. By making your ligaments, bones and muscles more flexible, you will prevent strains and back injuries.

But how to inspire your employees to do yoga often? You can hire somebody to come to your office and do practice there. You can help your employees by making a deal with a yoga center and work out a discount. There are many ways, you just need to think creatively.

6. Encourage Stretching

Regular stretches are a first step in the fight against back pain. Everybody should stretch at least once for 2 minutes, every 35-40 minutes of sitting.

People forget this. They think they don’t have the time. Employers see it as a waste of company time. But, if such a short break can improve productivity and prevent days off due to excruciating back pain, isn’t it worth the trouble? Encourage your employees to stretch regularly.

7. Getting Some Cushions Is Always A Good Idea

Next, we have lumbar support. So, if you spend all your time sitting down, you should get an ergonomic chair. However, if this is not possible, then you should try something else.

Namely, get a cushion, or a folded towel. Place this towel or cushion behind your lumbar (lower back) are when you sit at your desk. This will help you maintain good and proper posture when sitting.

8. Proper Computer Posture Is A Must

One of the reasons for frequent back pains and even headaches is the way you hold your neck. If you bring it forward too much, you prevent the blood from circulating and you press on the nerves.

Why do you do this? Because you are trying to see your computer screen. Computer screen needs to be positioned properly. Make sure that it is at your eye level, so that you are not forced to look down or up to use it.

9. Get Breathing Technique Experts And Handbooks

Learning breathing techniques is important as it improves many health aspects of people’s lives. It relieves stress, muscle tension and even builds abdomen muscles. This last benefit is what makes proper breathing a great prevention strategy when it comes to back pain.

Abdomen muscles help you keep your body straight. They also ‘pull their weight’ and relieve the pressure your entire body puts on the spine. Proper breathing strengthens them and it also forces your body to assume a proper posture.

10. Get Some Paper Holders

Some jobs and tasks require your employees to look at a piece of paper, and at a computer screen for hours on end. This can cause neck and back pain, as well as headaches and even cramps.

However, it has a very easy and simple fix. Just invest in a couple of paper holders, place them near the screen, and voila! An annoying issue solved in seconds.

11. Get Some Proper Headsets

Phone calls can cause back pain, believe it or not. While this may sound strange, constant phone calls, pressing the phone to the head, turning and twisting your body, all this can add up after a time.

However, like the previous item on the list, it’s quite simple to fix. Just get them a couple of headsets. This will make their jobs much easier and quicker. Not to mention leaving their hands free to do other tasks.

12. Proper and Ergonomic Chairs

Your employees spend a better part of their day in their office chair. This means that their chair is very important when it comes to correctly supporting their spine and back muscles.

Ergonomic chairs are not hard to find these days because a lot of businesses recognized their great effects on the wellbeing of their employees. A good ergonomic chair should enable the correct sitting posture of its user.

It needs to have appropriate lumbar support, adjustable backrest and seat tilt. This will prevent painful episodes because it will prevent back muscles and ligaments from being too strained.

13. Prevent Accidents With Non Slip Mats

To prevent injuries, make sure all your office floors are cleaned on a regular basis and that you have non slip mats placed in areas where slips, trips, and falls are most likely to happen. Non slip mats are usually the best option for areas such as slippery kitchens or greasy industrial areas. They contribute to worker safety in these types of work environments.

Alsco has a wide range of non slip mats available to fit all your needs. Contact us to find out more about what we have to offer – we are sure you will find something to suit your needs.

Photo courtesy of Freepik Image by katemangostar

Disclaimer – These articles are provided to supply general health, safety, and green information to people responsible for the same in their organisation. The articles are general in nature and do not substitute for legal and/or professional advice. We always suggest that organisations obtain information specific to their needs.