For many professional drivers, back pain seems to be an inevitable consequence of countless hours on the road. Bus drivers, big rig drivers, and even taxi drivers all report higher than average rates of chronic back problems.
The good news is that it doesn’t have to be this way. With the right car and truck seats, and by following some best practices, professional drivers can avoid developing chronic back pain.
Sitting for long periods of time isn’t good for your back or for your general health. Long times spent sitting puts lots of pressure on your lower back that can cause musculoskeletal and nerve problems. Try these tips to mitigate the effects of hours on the road:
- Exercise – Stretching your muscles and strengthening them will improve your overall health and will also help you avoid developing back pain. When you spend long periods sitting, the muscles in your lower back may atrophy, making musculoskeletal damage more likely. By strengthening your back with exercise, you reduce your likelihood of developing back problems.
- Find a comfortable seat – A good truck seat that provides plenty of lumbar support and offers lots of adjustment capability to accommodate your driving position is a driver’s best friend in the fight against back pain. Check product reviews and ask your supplier questions.
- Move as you drive – Adjust positions every 20 minutes or so. The motion will help your back muscles from developing cramps and relieve pressure on your spine.
- Don’t sit while you’re at rest stops – If you’ve pulled over to refuel or eat, don’t sit the whole time. Walk around your truck or the immediate area to help relieve pressure on your back.
- Consult with a physician – Talk with your doctor about more steps you can take to prevent back problems from developing. A little preventative care can go a long way. Doctors can help you find exercises, give nutritional advice, and offer other solutions to keep your back in good condition.