When assessing people’s workstations, it’s a rare occasion when I come across someone who has NOT experienced some back pain at some time.
More and more computer-based work means we are all sitting for most of the day and that usually means back pain.
I recently came across a great blog, Sitting Is the Smoking of Our Generation, in the Harvard Business Review and I believe every word of it. Its author promotes walking meetings during which colleagues do just that—walk while they meet.
I mentioned this to a few friends and they laughed at the idea. We seem to grasp that technology doesn’t have to be tied to a desk—consider the explosion in the use of smartphones and tablets—yet we can’t get our heads around users being allowed to move too.
Maybe it is unusual, but I don’t think it’s impossible, indeed, it’s a great way to bring more movement into the modern workplace. And this is just what we need to do to combat back pain—move! Dale Gordon, ND, explains it perfectly here:
“Your joints are a marvel of engineering, designed to maintain their lubrication with synovial fluid (the thick colorless liquid that surrounds joints). When you move your joints, these fluids splash over the parts of the joint not reached by blood vessels that supply nutrition and lubrication, allowing the bones to glide over each other.”
Given the increase in back pain, maybe walking meetings aren’t such a crazy idea. But if you can’t get your colleagues to agree to walk, try these quick wins to get a bit more movement in your own working day:
- Stretch while you wait for the kettle to boil.
- Take a 10-minute walk after you eat your lunch.
- Install software/apps that remind and even force you to take a break.