Movement for better health and less back pain

An “Unlikely” cause of Low Back and Neck Pain

Dr. James D. Miller D.C.

Brookfield Family Chiropractic, LLC

The majority of patients seen today in our office for neck and lower back have nothing to do with an injury or event. The patient usually comes in and states that they have been experiencing pain for many months. They relate that they don’t know why they feel bad because they cannot recall any specific incident or accident that they may have done to cause the pain. Many patients with these aches and pains say they are just sitting at their desk all day. That’s it.

That is why they are in pain?  Yes. Sitting for most of the day is hazardous to your health for many reason-not just for cardiovascular or circulatory reasons but it is not good for your spine. If you think about it, when sitting at your desk all day your spine is in a flexion position. The cervical, thoracic and lumbar muscles maintain a forward flexed posture throughout your work day.  Then you leave work and get in your car and, there it is again, the flexion position. Now it’s time for dinner, and more sitting in the same position.

Loads During Sitting

•Alf Nachemson, MD, PhD was an exceptional pioneer in spine care and documented higher loads on the discs in sitting postures compared to standing.

• Sitting slouched minimizes muscle activity while sitting upright requires higher activation of the psoas muscles which stabilizes the spine and extensors which increases compressive loads on the spine.

•Kelsey discovered a link between prolonged sitting and the incident of disc herniations. (Rani Lueder: Ergonomics of Seated Movement a Review of the Scientific Literature Considerations relevant to the sum chair, Jun 2004.)

•Questionnaires of patients with disc protrusions compared to nerve entrapment syndromes showed that more subjects with disc protrusions had done NO physical work from ages 15-20.

Many jobs today require sitting in front of a computer or being on the phone all day.  You might ask what do you do prevent the back and neck pains associated with today’s work environment.  You must keep your body moving to keep those muscles along the spine strong and flexible.  There are exercises you can do at your desk to keep your core muscles strong as well as sitting up straight like your mother always said to keep those muscles strong.  Regular visits to your Chiropractor also provide spinal manipulation to increase intersegmental motion and a spinal exercise training program specifically to correct motion, and build whole body joint stability.  Most importantly Keep moving!!!!

Brookfield Family Chiropractic, LLC  499 Federal Road #18  Brookfield, CT 06804  one: 203-733-5877   Email:

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