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Good driving posture: How to preserve your back and neck?

back pain

If you are like most people, you spend a lot of time in your car.

And, if you're like most people, you probably don't think about your posture when you drive.

This can be a serious mistake, especially if you suffer from back or neck pain.

In this article, we will discuss the importance of good driving posture and how to protect your back and neck while driving!

If you've been experiencing back or neck pain lately, it may be time to take a closer look at your driving posture.

Believe it or not, the way you sit in your car can have a significant impact on your spine and overall health. 🚗

Follow these simple tips and you'll be feeling better in no time!


Why adopt a good posture at the wheel?


When you sit behind the wheel, many muscles are mobilized. Yes, you read that right, even if you are sitting doing nothing!

Your body is constantly working hard to maintain its stability.

Unfortunately, bad posture habits can lead to serious problems: tense muscles, joint pain, and worse, back problems

The list is long, but here's what you may encounter:

  • Sciatica
  • Lower back or neck pain
  • Contractures of the back muscles
  • Stiffness in the spine (vertebral column)
  • Extremely tense trapezius (muscles between and above the shoulders)


If you're one of the millions of people who suffer from back or neck pain neckYou know how hard it can be to get through the day.

Sitting in an uncomfortable position for long periods of time only makes the pain worse.

Many people experience back and neck pain while driving, which can be a real problem if you have to drive a lot for work or other reasons.

We all know how annoying back and neck pain can be, especially when we're trying to concentrate on the road.

If you suffer from back or neck pain, there are a number of things you can do to make driving more comfortable.


neck pain car tip


Examples not to be followed


Of course, there are examples to follow for good posture on the road. However, there are also counter-examples.

It is also important to know what not to adopt as posture while driving.

Examples include:

  • Back tilted backwards and elbows fully extended
  • Rounded back and head tilted forward

When positioned according to the first example, the natural curvature of the lower back is reversed, creating pressure on the lumbar region.

In this position, vibrations caused by the road are not properly absorbed by the discs between the vertebrae.

In the long run, this posture can lead to back, shoulder and elbow pain.

The second is probably the worst possible position to take. In the long term, this example encourages cervical pain as well as pain in the upper back.


Other bad habits to watch out for


Many people like to rest their elbow on the windowsill, especially in summer!

Unfortunately, this position creates a lateral deviation of the spine that can lead to long-term pain.

Passengers should also avoid placing their feet on the car's dashboard.

In addition to being dangerous in the event of an accident, this position crushes the lower back, which can lead to pain.

Keep an eye on your back pockets too! If you usually keep your wallet or cell phone in them, remember to remove them when you sit down.

Finally, avoid traumatizing your back by getting out of your car. Rotate your whole body outwards to the left, legs bent and glued together, while remaining seated.

Bring both legs out to the side at once, accompanying the outward turning of your torso with the movement of your legs, place your feet on the ground on the outside and propel yourself upright on both feet.

Don't do what many motorists usually do: pull one leg out to the side, push on one foot and then pull the other leg out.

This results in considerable spinal rotation.

Otherwise, the asymmetry created causes the spine to tilt, which can lead to back pain.


What to watch out for to adopt a better posture when driving?


By following these simple tips, you can help reduce the risk of back and neck pain while driving:

  1. A good seat height
  2. A good inclination of the backrest
  3. Monitor the distance from the seat
  4. The height of the steering wheel
  5. Fitting the headrest properly
  6. Proper placement of mirrors


In short, make sure your back is properly supported by adjusting your seat so that you're sitting upright.

You should be able to see over the steering wheel without straining your neck. Then adjust your mirrors so you don't have to turn your head to see behind you.

Finally, although often overlooked, the headrest is very important. It should be at the same height as (or slightly higher than) the top of your head.

Be careful to watch your posture and try to avoid slouching while driving.

By following these tips, you can help reduce the risk of back and neck pain while driving.

If, despite these adjustments, you feel that your back is not well supported or if you are forced to reposition yourself frequently, consider improving the lumbar support.

Some cars have a pump built into the seat to inflate or deflate the backrest. 🚗

Alternatively, you can purchase a lumbar support at most stores. The goal is to fill the gap between the backrest and the lower back, created by the natural curvature of the lumbar region, to support the entire back.


Practical advice from a chiropractor


Hello, my name is Michelle Bernachez, chiropractor at the Chiro Ste-Rose clinic.

Today, I'd like to share with you a few tips to help you reduce lower back pain.

If you suffer from low back pain, back pain, dherniated discsThese tips are for you. It is the position in the car that we will look at to help you have less pain when you are on the road.


A support for the lumbar region


When I am standing I have a lumbar curve and when I go to sit I will try to really keep it as much as possible. In this way, the spine will absorb shock much better.

Most cars have a lumbar support on the seat that you can inflate in the back, this comes to give the support you need.

If your car doesn't have one, you can always take a rolled towel or small cushion and put it behind your back. 🚗

When you're sitting down to drive, it's important to rest on the cushion to maintain the lumbar curve. In this way, the discs will be less stressed and won't become irritated.

Often, we tend to slip and slump into a bad position when driving, due to fatigue.


Tips for maintaining good posture


My advice is to set the mirror at the right height and then leave it there, so when you can't see backwards, you're really in a bad position; then it's a warning that you need to change it.

Finally, I advise you throughout your trip to make sure you keep your back straight while lying down.

I wish you good luck with this! I hope my tips will be of service to you on your long drives.



Here is a video of my explanation:



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