Be Proactive and Avoid Back Pain at Work

Posted June 19, 2015 - Revised June 19, 2015

If your job requires lifting boxes or other heavy items, chronic back pain can become an issue affecting your overall productivity. Even employees working at a desk while typing on a computer all day occasionally suffer back issues, especially if their posture is poor or their workspace is ergonomically challenged. Keeping your back from distracting you on the job helps make you the best possible employee.

Being proactive when dealing with back problems on the job is vital for staying productive. Here are a few tips for avoiding back pain in the workplace.

Finding Out What Causes Back Pain on the Job

Depending on the type of work performed, the causes for back pain on the job remain numerous. Maybe you overexerted yourself when lifting that heavy box onto a high shelf? Perhaps the typing on your non-ergonomic computer keyboard while slouching in your chair is causing repetitive muscle fatigue?

Living an unhealthy lifestyle – little to no exercise, a poor diet – also exacerbates any back pain issues. You need to take the steps to improve your overall health to be more productive in your everyday life. Thankfully, most of these steps are relatively easy.

Exercising Nearly Every Day Helps to Strengthen Your Back

The United States Department of Health and Human Services recommends moderately exercising at least 150 minutes per week. If you prefer a more vigorous workout, 75 minutes per week also meets their guidelines. While most of this exercise needs to be focused on aerobics, spend at least two workout sessions each week strengthening the core muscles in your back and abdomen.

Good Posture is Vital for Preventing Back Pain 

Pay close attention to your posture, no matter if you are standing, sitting, or walking. Never slouch when upright or seated, and be sure to balance yourself equally on both feet.

It is important to choose a work chair that allows you to easily keep both feet flat on the floor. Consider using a foot stool to prop your feet up if necessary. If your chair doesn't properly support your lower back, a rolled-up towel might suffice.

Ways to Prevent Repetitive Stress

Repetitive stress definitely contributes to work-related back issues. Make sure to use any tools available to you to make lifting heavy objects easier. To help employees stuck at their desk throughout the workday, getting up from the chair every few hours and standing, stretching or walking around can loosen stiff back muscles.  Ultimately, employee back pain adversely affects the company's productivity and bottom line.

If you need any advice on becoming more productive at work, talk to the experts at Ambassador Personnel. One of the top general staffing agencies in the country, we can help both you and your career. Schedule some time with us today!