Holiday Travelling tips!

Here are 5 tips to help you try and help your back and neck stay pain-free while travelling.

  1. Make sure you are sitting properly in your car seat. Sit up straight with your knees slightly higher than your hips and don’t slump! Make sure you aren’t overstretching to reach the steering wheel as this will put extra pressure on your back ,neck, shoulders and wrists. Adjust your headrest so you can gently lean back against it and let your neck muscles relax. You can pop a rolled up towel or small pillow under your bottom to help cushion your coccyx and lower back in case you hit any bumpy roads. Intermittent use of a back support or a small pillow in the small of your back can help give your back some extra support. Check that you don’t have your wallet, cell phone, or anything else in your back pocket, as that may throw your pelvis spine out of alignment while you are sitting.
  2. Take regular breaks to get out of the car and move around….ideally these breaks should be every 30 minutes. If you get stuck in traffic, here are a few exercises you can do from your car seat to keep your body moving until you can get out of the car.

i. Shoulder circles (forwards and backwards).

              ii. Stretch your neck forwards…

             iii. Stretch your neck side to side

iv. Turn your body and neck to each side…

  V . Mobilise your wrists….rotate them to the right, then to the left

3. Stay hydrated!

4. Be mindful about how you pack. Only take what you need and try and keep the weight distributed evenly between your various bits of luggage. Take care as you get your bags out of your car boot… be careful not to twist as you lift-try and keep your back straight, your shoulders in line with your hips and suck your tummy in gently as you lift… if you have back support, it would help your back to put it on while you are lifting. Try and use luggage that has wheels on or pack a trolley to help you move bags easily from your car to where you are staying.

5. Use heat or ice packs to help with any pain. Pop some ice packs into a cool box or take some stick-on heat pads/use your heated car seat (if you have one) to help relax tight muscle tissue and reduce any inflammation.

When you arrive at your destination, have a hot shower or bath, stretch your back (see gardening blog for stretching exercises) out and cold pack any sore areas.

Have a great holiday and hope these tips help!

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