Safe lifting involves using your legs to spare your back. Bend your knees, tighten your abdominal muscles, and keep the object being lifted close to your body. Unsafe lifting techniques usually involve positions that will cause you strain when you add a load to them.
Avoid Twisting Motions
The use of twisting motions should be carefully monitored, and scaled back or eliminated as appropriate. When doing heavy work, such as housework, try to keep twisting to a minimum. In other activities, pay close attention to how you are moving your spine, as well as any warning signs such as pain or tightness, that may indicate trouble.
Our bodies are comprised of approximately 70% water. Enough water keeps us fluid, rather than stiff. Drinking plenty of water enhances the height of intervertebral disks, keeping them the healthy shock absorbers they are. Water is necessary for nearly every bodily process so is good to have in generous supply, at least 6-8 8-ounce glasses per day. It is almost impossible to drink too much water.
Live an Active Life and Strengthen Your Abs
Exercise and activity keep the muscles of the spine strong. The most important muscles to strengthen to avoid back pain are the abdominals. Include stretching in your fitness program to avoid stiffness, which causes pain. Another reason to stay flexible is that stiff muscles are a precursor to injury.
Maintain a Healthy Weight
Maintaining a healthy weight is generally an excellent way to prevent all kinds of diseases and discomforts. For the spine, it avoids compression and loading of the intervertebral disks, prevents postural abnormalities, such as anterior pelvic tilt, and interrupts a sedentary lifestyle, with its accompanying stiff and/or weak muscles.
Interrupt Long Periods of Sitting
If you sit for long periods of time, force yourself to get up from your chair as much as your work environment will permit. Sitting loads the spine and compresses the discs, leading to disc problems. Slaving over a computer for long periods of time can also cause posture problems.
Try a Holistic Approach
Holistic bodywork techniques and systems such as massage therapy, yoga, Pilates, Chiropractic, or acupuncture are a great way to keep the structures of your spine tuned up for a lifetime!