Travelling for business or pleasure is a normal part of life. Travel is a commonly overlooked cause of lower back pain. Air travel in particular can be hazardous to your spinal health due to prolonged slouching in a confined space for several hours followed by dragging your suitcase through airport terminals. Here are some tips to help you stay healthy while on the go:
Hands Over Head
Protect your back while you travel, raise your hands over your head and press your palms together with light pressure for 5-seconds. You can do this movement standing or sitting. This helps your brain to ‘fire’ your abdominal muscles.
Stand with both legs together. Take a slight step backwards while squeezing the buttocks on the backwards leg. Hold position for a count of 6 and repeat 5 times per side. This stops your buttock muscles from going to sleep when sitting all the time.
Breathing sets the benchmark for core stability and neck strength. Put one hand on your chest and one on your abdomen. Take a deep breath in through your nose and make the bottom hands move before the top hand. Breathe this way for 3 minutes.
Stop and Move
Try walking around the car a couple of times the next time you stop at a service station or perhaps hop up and down for 30 seconds on the balls of your feet. Breathing and heart rate increases delivering much needed oxygen to tight and restricted muscle tissue starving for nutrients.
Five Quick Tips:
- 1. Pack cold and heat packs.
- 2. Bring your own pillow with you.
- 3. Drink plenty of water to hydrate your body. Proper hydration reduces inflammation
- 4. Wear support socks to prevent stagnant blood flow
- 5. Bring a golf ball to roll on the bottom of your foot (when not driving of course!). This acupressure technique stimulates blood flow, nerve energy, and decreases soft tissue tightness.
If you plan well, execute well and take care of your body while in transit, the trip can be painless.