There are a lot ways a driver can sit behind the wheel. However, most would always choose to adopt the most comfortable position.
Unfortunately, this position isn’t exactly healthy for your spine. Aside from the long hours most people spend on sitting on a comfortable office chair at work, poor driving posture can aggravate that back pain they’ve been tolerating for quite some time.
This is the reason why back pain is as common as colds when it comes to health problems today. It may cost you thousands to have the car seats changed to fit your posture needs, but there are ways where you can adjust the seat accordingly to avoid straining your muscles.
Take note of these steps to guide you when you drive off to work or to your next long distance trip.
Keep the height of your seat as high as it can comfortably go, while making sure that your head doesn’t hit the roof of the car, your feet can reach the pedals, and you have a good view of the road. A high car seat serves as your mobile yoga chair that allows your pelvis to maintain its neutral position.
If the seat is too low, you would tend to lean your head forward, causing you to slouch further. You will develop a rounded back, resulting you to look like Quasimodo on wheels.
You should position your chair within a good distance from the foot pedals. If the seat is too far, you would tend to sit on the edge of the car seat and overstrain your leg muscles. Surely you wouldn’t want to suffer leg cramps while on the road that could endanger you and your passengers.
Use Pelvis and Middle Back Support, Not Lumbar Support
Most cars today are fitted with lumbar seat support. Well, this is what most people missed to understand when it comes to back support while sitting. When you sit, your lumbar area barely needs support. The parts where you’ll be needing more support are the pelvis and middle back considering the weight of your upper body will be dependent on these two major backbones and muscles.
Lumbar seat support has this curve that instead of supporting, causes your pelvis to go forward and your middle back to lean backward. This creates an uncomfortable C-curved back. So, do not easily fall for lumbar support chair commercials you usually see online an on television.
Stretch While You Sit
Imagine you’re sitting on a comfortable office chair and perform simple stretching while you’re stuck in traffic or waiting for someone in the car. Your body is not designed to remain in one static position for long hours. Ambulate once in a while to maintain proper circulation.
Prolonged sitting compresses your spine. You can relieve the tension in that area if you move around.
One of the many reasons why drivers shift to the most uncomfortable positions while driving is that they feel tired holding on the steering wheel with a wrong elbow position for long periods. Keep your elbows low and close to your body. With this, you maintain your shoulders in a safe and neutral position.
Also, avoid placing your elbow on the side of the window. It may make you look cool, but it actually causes your shoulder to flare out, resulting to hunched shoulders and bad posture.
So these are the things you have to keep in mind when you drive. Make the most of your time in your car. Aside from driving safely, it pays to keep your back healthy, too, to prevent any untoward consequences in the future.