It’s that time of year again, Strictly Come Dancing has kicked into action and we’re heading for the sofa! While that may be great entertainment value, it could be painful …
The launch of the Autumn TV shows attracts many of us to our sofas like moths to a light. For some of us, this means we will be enjoying the equivalent of 2 whole days of extra sofa time before the glitterball is finally lifted.
And that can result in pain! And, no, I don’t mean the pain of spraining something when trying out the dance moves. I mean back pain from sitting too long on the sofa!
I see a lot of patients in my London Osteopathy clinics who come to me with back pain. Poor posture is one of the prime causes of back pain and sitting incorrectly (or slouching) on the sofa can ruin an otherwise enjoyable night in front of the TV, especially if you are prone to back pain.
But you don’t have to give up your TV to avoid the pain, there are three simple things that you can do that could mean you can enjoy Strictly, pain free.
Firstly, sit up straight! Think about the shape that your spine is in as you are sitting and adjust your position. Keep your back straight and your head held high. This will put your spine into a “neutral” position that doesn’t strain it. You may find it helps to sit in a chair that gives you better support for your spine. Also, sit with your feet flat on the floor and the whole of your body facing forwards, from nose to toes.
Secondly, take a break! Your body is not designed to sit in one position for long periods. Give it a rest by standing up and walking around for a few minutes, at least once an hour. Maybe get yourself a glass of water?
Thirdly, exercise! No, you don’t need to do 30 push-ups. But stretching your muscles will help to counteract the effects of inactivity. A few gentle exercises will loosen your muscles and prepare them for the next few Strictly dances. But, a word of caution here, if you are in any doubt about what exercises might be best for you then please book an appointment to see me and I can advise you.
So try this and see if it helps you. And try to avoid being over enthusiastic when practicing the dance moves too!