Spring is just around the corner. As the weather warms, you may find yourself thinking about taking road trips and going to distant places in your car. If you have back or musculoskeletal problems, now is the time to think about how you can straighten your back and ensure that your body is ergonomically safe while on the road. The following 5 tips will help you improve your posture, so you can avoid back aches this spring and summer.
Use the Mirror Trick
Sit up straight in your car seat, then adjust you rear view and side view mirrors so you can see out of them. Leave the mirrors in that position. You’ll have to sit up in your seat in order to use the mirrors, and that will ensure that you maintain good posture throughout your drive.
Adjust Your Seat Properly
Before going on any long car trips, take the time to properly adjust your own seat. Follow these steps:
- Tilt your seat to ensure that the bottom of your thighs are evenly supported.
- Raise or lower the seat so that your eyes have a good view out the windshield and your legs are clear of the bottom of the steering wheel.
- Adjust the back of the seat so that your shoulders are behind your hips, but not by an extreme amount. Aim for an angle of approximately 110 degrees.
- Slide the seat on its track until your legs are easily able to reach the pedals without bending significantly.
No matter how well your car seat is adjusted, you may still find that your joints become achy and sore during long car trips. Getting up every couple of hours will keep the blood flowing to compressed areas of your back and spine, and will prevent you from slumping after you’ve been driving for a while.
Avoid Sitting on Your Phone or Wallet
You may not notice the phone or wallet in your back pocket when the trip first begins, but you’ll begin to notice it after you’ve been driving for a while. Maintaining equilibrium while driving is important for reducing undue pressure on your joints and spine. By putting something hard in your back pocket, you cause your body to sit unevenly. This can lead to muscle strain and discomfort while you drive. You can prevent this from happening by pulling out the contents of your back pocket while you drive.
Adjust Your Steering Wheel
Avoid placing the steering wheel at a height that will prevent you from seeing important information on the dashboard while en route. Sitting in the driver’s seat, you should be able to see all numbers on the dashboard meters. If you have to bend over to see any important part of the dashboard, then the steering wheel needs to be raised or lowered accordingly.
For more information about how you can improve your posture while driving, take a look at this helpful article online, or contact Choice Chiropractic in Pittsburgh. We’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have about how you can improve your posture while driving. If you frequently experience back pain after time spent in your car, you may be able to benefit from a chiropractic adjustment. Call us at 412-364-9699 to make an appointment.