Marin Movement Center Physical Therapy Blog

Marion Kregeloh, PT, CFP provides health information for physical therapy, osteoporosis, chronic pain, physical therapy, orthopedic therapy, Feldenkrais, in the Marin Movement Center blog.

Sitting and Back Pain

Posted by Marion Kregeloh
Marion Kregeloh
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on Monday, 21 November 2011 in [ Back ]



Back Pain is the most common source for patient referrals to my physical therapy practice. Research shows that 80% of the population in the US has to deal with back pain on at least one occasion in their life time. Back pain is the second most common reason people visit their primary care physician and it ranks second behind

headaches as a reason to miss work.




Lech Walesa, former Polish president and Nobel peace prize winner, is now a global "Fit for Work" ambassador. In a recent meeting in parliament, Walesa urged the European Union to make the health of the working population a priority. "100 millions Europeans suffer from chronic musculoskelatal disorders (MSD), 40 millions of whom are workers with up to 40% having to give up work due to their conditions. This is unacceptable in the 21st century".


In Britain, researchers found that 62% of young people suffer from back pain.


Sitting is found to be the main source for our modern life's back injuries. Sitting at the computer and in the car takes a big toll. Many young people sit for 8 hours, five days a week. What makes it worse is incorrect posture while sitting. These small imbalances are multiplied over time and can create chronic muscle, joint and disc problems.


The human body is designed to move. Who ever thought of placing such bodies in cubicles with artificial light, air and often no space to stretch out and take walks?


While we cannot change the set-ups of a modern work place overnight, we can make small adjustments that prevent injury, aches and pains as well as stiffness.


Here are some suggestions for a healthier back at your workplace:


1. Never sit more than 20 minutes at a time. Get up and take a few steps. Stretch.

2. Change your positons frequently: do pelvis tilts, lean back over the back of the chair, do spinal twist movements while sitting.

3. Stay hydrated. This is a reason to get up and drink some water frequently through the day.

4. Take a walk during lunch hour, even a moderately paced 10 minute walk helps to keep your body more limber.

5. Make sure your chair and the computer are set up properly (height, angle).

6. If space permits, keep a gym ball in your office and use it as an alternate chair for some stretches at a time.

7. Exercise daily, at least every other day. No hard workouts are needed to maintain a healthy spine!


Our bodies want to move. We are not made to sit still. Move, Breathe, Stretch, Change positions, Move freely again..........


Contact Marion Kregeloh, PT, CFP for more information at 415.479.1765.



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