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Taking care of your back this Christmas

It’s that magical time of year where London’s Christmas lights are going up, work offices and homes are being filled with tins of chocolates and mince pies and everyone is getting ready for a little break with family and friends after a busy year!

With this also comes heavy Christmas shopping, commuting to see family members,  and sometimes even a little bit of stress – which can all put a bit of a strain on our backs and necks! Here are a few tips from our Chiropractor Lauren to help avoid back pain during the festive period.

Get help decorating – Christmas trees and decorations can be heavy! Use a stepladder and get someone to help you with the decorating rather than getting in awkward stretching positions. In general bend your knees and stick your bottom out when lifting heavy objects like turkeys and Christmas trees to protect your back.

Don’t carry too many shopping bags– Try to do the Christmas shopping in stages rather than all at once; lots of heavy bags can put extra strain on your back. Also try not to walk lopsided! Distributing the shopping load equally at both sides of the body or putting your presents in a rucksack can help reduce pressure on the spine.

Create a gift wrapping station – Gather all your supplies so everything is in arm’s reach. Avoid sitting on the floor and hunching over; sit at the kitchen table in a comfortable supportive chair or stand at the worktops to wrap instead.

Travel happy – Whether travelling by train, plane or car when visiting family members, remember to have a break from sitting at least every 2 hours and have a walk around. Simple exercises like shoulder shrugs, buttock clenches and foot circles can all help keep your body active when travelling too.  When driving make sure you have your bottom against the seat back with your shoulder blades touching the back rest of the chair. The seat should be set slightly backwards so it feels natural and your elbows should be at a comfortable and relaxed angle for driving.

Keep active – We tend to sit a lot at Christmas but it is important to keep moving to keep our joints and muscles healthy and happy! Get out for regular walks over the festive period. If sitting for a prolonged time vary the seat you sit in and put a cushion in the small of your back to avoid slumping.

Seek professional advice – If you are already experiencing an episode of back pain or want to prevent one from starting, consider booking in an appointment with a professional like your Chiropractor.

To help you feel tip top for Christmas book an appointment with us today! Lauren has a Christmas offer on of £20 off new patient appointments this December so spread the word to family and friends!

Resources: British Chiropractic Association