How much time do you spend commuting during the work week? The answer usually surprises people when you total the daily values: 30 minutes each way per day of the week adds up to 5 hours a week in which your sitting posture really counts. Unfortunately, very few car seats are engineered to support a healthy resting position for the spine. From our perspective, driving is a temporary activity and therefore we place less impetus on our posture in the car. This is unfortunate because the same rules apply to the car as to any other part of the day: sitting with consistently poor posture can leave the muscles and structures of your back in jeopardy.
- Hands at 9 and 3
- Face forward, with head balanced over the spine. This may mean actually using your head rest.
- Sit up straight with your butt touching the back of the seat; keep your hips square.
- Avoid leaning one elbow on the center console.
Of course, strictly following this posture code for every minute of the drive will make you look like a robot, so make sure that your seat is adjusted properly to allow your shoulders to relax while your arms grip the steering wheel. Use a jacket or small pillow to support a healthy lordotic curve and above all, guard against getting stiff. This may mean adding minutes on to your trip by pulling over to stretch it out, but those minutes will be worth it at the end of the trip.
Posture is an easy way to influence your health. For more tips on how to boost the health of your daily life, give our office a call at (510) 656-9077 to schedule an appointment today.
Dr. Francis Scorca, D.C.