At work or during leisure time: your back never takes a break. It keeps you upright the whole day and stabilizes you. It helps you carry the groceries home or lift heavy loads on the construction site. It bends for you when you cut other people’s hair or tie a child’s shoe laces. In other words, much demand is made on your back throughout the day. So it’s important to relieve your back and keep it healthy. Our tips can help you.

Don’t worry, you don’t have to change all your everyday habits to protect your back. It’s much more important that you keep an eye on how you move throughout the day and which posture you adopt during different activities. Even small things have a huge impact on your back health.

Bauerfeind back therapy - back guide

“Back Advice” is one of five modules of Bauerfeind’s back therapy. If you want to find out more about comprehensive back therapy and the other modules, you can find all the information here:

 

View Bauerfeind’s back therapy

If you’re already being treated for back pain, please listen to the instructions provided by your physician and the medical specialists, and discuss whether implementing the tips in this article is suitable for you.

Appropriate education relating to back pain really helps the healing process.


Prof. Dr. Hans-Raimund Casser
Medical Director at DRK Pain Center in Mainz, Germany

Sitting and standing correctly to protect your back

Even if it may sound trivial: pay attention to how you sit and stand. That applies in particular if you mainly work sitting down or standing up, but also during activities, such as cooking, ironing, waiting for the bus, or playing chess.

 

 

If you have to stand for extended periods, you should position yourself such that your feet aren’t subjected to one-sided strain and your hip doesn’t stick out to the side. A healthy posture is ensured when your hip and head form a vertical line. Don’t fully straighten your legs but slightly bend your knees. Try to avoid standing still for too long. Changing movements can put an even load on your legs, or stand on tip-toes every now and then and slowly rock back to your feet.

 

For extended periods of sitting, in the office for example, it’s important that your spine keeps its natural shape. That means the pelvis should be tilted forwards a little, which slightly lifts the chest. Your shoulders should be relaxed and not pulled upward. Also make sure that your hip is not lower than your knees. In addition to an ergonomic posture, it’s also vital to regularly vary your sitting position. This leads to increased blood flow to your muscles and prevents tension.

Designing the work place to care for your back

You spend a great deal of your time at work. It’s therefore critical that the design of your work place is as back-friendly as possible. In addition to clear daylight, ergonomics plays an essential part in your well-being: work furniture, such as a work bench, desk, and chair should be adjustable to your height and set up in an ideal sitting and working position. In an office, the position of the monitor and an ergonomically shaped keyboard and mouse are also significant.

 

If you mainly work sitting down, try to move around every now and then. For example, don’t place files right on your desk, meaning you have to get up to fetch them. Take the stairs instead of the lift and go for a walk in your break after your lunch.

 

Some may not get enough exercise, whereas others never get a rest: if your work involves physical activity, try to ensure an appropriate workload so you don’t subject yourself to excessive strain. If possible, use carrying aids for heavy loads and take sufficient breaks.

Lifting and carrying correctly

Whether on a construction site, when moving house, gardening, or grocery shopping: carrying heavy objects puts a lot of strain on your back. But you can relieve your back and spine by ensuring back-friendly lifting and carrying.

If you want to lift something, stand close to the object and squat down. Hold the load close to your body, then stand up with a straight back. Using your leg strength relieves your back. If you also tense your back muscles, you will improve stability. When you put the object down again, do not bend forwards but squat down from the knees with a straight back. Plus: it’s better to make several journeys rather than carrying excessive loads.

Staying active

Reading, watching TV, board games, fishing – hobbies make up for what is often a stressful day. But make sure you don’t spend all your spare time sitting down.

The best advice for a healthy back still remains the same: stay active! Susanne Gramatté agrees. The Specialist in Orthopedics and Chirotherapy recommends integrating as much activity into everyday life as possible. “It can be little things that don’t cost anything,” says Gramatté. “But you gain a lot.” If you have a good stretch in the morning after getting up, you’ll have much more energy for the day. For short distances, you can use a bicycle or walk instead of taking the car. And if you go for a small walk after work, you won’t just be active in the fresh air but you can also clear your head – both are beneficial for your back!

Improving posture

In case of pain, especially if your back muscles are weak, it may be useful, if agreed by your treating physician, to provide your back with additional help by wearing a support or orthosis. This type of medical product will straighten your spine and help with a healthy posture. This will stabilize your back and subject it to less strain, which can alleviate pain. With a support or orthosis, you can thus regain quality of life and – during particularly tough times – reduce or completely avoid sick days.

66% of working patients who weren’t able to work before being treated with a back support/back orthosis can get back to work more quickly, thanks to the product.*


*Results from the representative survey conducted by the Allensbach Institute for Public Opinion Research on behalf of eurocom e.V. (2021): Link

Another important tip: don’t confuse a support or orthosis with a corset! After all, you want to keep active, which is what your back needs. That’s why Bauerfeind’s supports and orthoses have been designed so they don’t restrict you but encourage and help with activities that promote health and targeted back exercises. Thanks to their high degree of wearing comfort, they can support you during everyday activities and on your journey toward a healthy back.

Get a prescription for support!

It’s best if you speak to a physician about multimodal back therapy and discuss which support or orthosis as well as which modules are suitable for you. So you can prepare effectively for this talk, we’ve compiled a checklist for you.

 

Download checklist

 

 

Bauerfeind supports and orthoses

Would you like to know more about our back supports and orthoses as well as their effectiveness? Find out here what’s special about them and how they can alleviate your problems.

 

Discover back supports and orthoses now

Start your training with Bauerfeind’s back therapy

Stand up for your back: when you use the free Bauerfeind Training App*, you will receive a personalized training program, developed by health experts and individually tailored to your symptoms and the training with your support or orthosis. In addition to a comprehensive selection of exercises, you will also receive useful tips on keeping your back healthy. Make your back therapy complete – get the app and start your individual training program.

 

Download the app here.

 

*If you’re already being treated, please consult the staff helping with your therapy on the use of our Training App.

This online advice gives an initial insight into this area of expertise, and suggests selected medical diagnosis and treatment options. Even though the details are scientifically substantiated, we do not claim that all information is complete or that all schools of thought are represented. All contents, in particular those about diagnostics and treatment options (texts, images, graphs, etc.), are understood as non-binding support for the treatment that must be chosen by a physician or specialist. This online advice is no substitute for the necessary personal medical history and its overall assessment by a physician / a professionally trained and qualified specialist, considering ongoing treatment, if applicable.