Why Your Office Chair Is Ruining Your Back
Many of us who work the typical 9 to 5 job spend a considerable amount of time every day sitting still in an office chair. Often the chair isn't adjusted properly and so we sit hunched over, for hours at a time, working away and not realizing that we are actually doing a lot of damage to our back. Whether you are currently experiencing back pain or not, below are some of the reasons why your office chair could be ruining your back.
Many people, especially young people with more resilient muscles, are slowly doing irreparable damage to their back every day simply by sitting still in an office chair. The basic problem is that we need to use our muscles in order to keep them high functioning. Inactivity causes muscles to atrophy or shrink causing diminished strength, lowers the production of insulin from our pancreas (insulin regulates glucose), and lowers our circulatory efficiency.
With prolonged static sitting, your back muscles begin to demand movement and exertion, just like any other muscles. Minimal movement such as fidgeting or squirming buys us short term relief but a cumulative problem still exists. We’re still doing damage.
It is widely accepted that by remaining seated, especially in improper or poorly designed chairs, for extended periods of time, our hip flexors and the soft supporting tissue of the spine shorten, which ultimately weakens our back. Not only is sitting still bad for the strength and health of your back muscles, but the position in which many people sit (i.e. Hunched over looking at a screen all day) does horrible things to your posture. Over time, your back becomes used to the contorted position you force it to hold all day long and postures begin to droop.
Poorly designed chairs and unhealthy sitting positions create discomfort and injury especially in the lower back, neck and shoulders. Long term, this can contribute to inflammation, displaced discs and debilitating pain. A healthy chair encourages a comfortably balanced posture with natural movement to keep our blood flowing.
If you are someone that spends a significant portion of your day sitting still and are nervous that you may be doing, or have already done, damage to your back, keep the above information in mind and take the necessary preventative measures to ensure that your back doesn't retire before you do.