Houston is infamous for its traffic
This article states that the average worker spends 51 minutes commuting, making Houston the city with the 11th longest average commute in the nation. What’s more, another survey placed Houston 6th in the nation in the category of most stressed out commuters. One of the the more silent victims of our commuter culture is your spine! Most cars are not designed with the human spine in mind; they are often ergonomically negligible. We then combine this lack of support with poor posture and high stress levels which pose a significant threat to our musculoskeletal balance. 51 minutes represents an opportunity or a curse for commuter spines across our community- read on to find out how you can protect your spine against the daily commute.
If you must commute, you must also protect your spine.
Here are our tips for making sure that your car seat and commute don’t get the best of your spine:
- Always maintain awareness: a ubiquitous human tendency is to crane the head forward and hunch the shoulders inwards. If you feel yourself doing this, be sure to return to a more neutral alignment.
- Use support- whether it be a seating pad or a lumbar cushion, try to maintain a naturally supported curvature.
- Stretch at red lights- there is no law against gently stretching your neck while you wait.
- Hands at 9 and 3 with shoulders relaxed- goes a long way in preventing systemic tension in the upper back, neck and shoulders.
- Avoid leaning on your center console.
- Choose entertainment that keeps you relaxed- remember that mental stress leads to muscular tension and vice-versa. Being calm is your best defense against your daily commute.
Don’t let your commute get the best of your body
If you have noticed that you feel consistently stiff as a result of your commute and your job, be sure to give our office a call to schedule an appointment today. We can help you workshop your spine’s risk factors inherent in your particular lifestyle and develop a plan that uses natural modalities to prevent pain and degeneration.