Bank Holidays in the UK are a time for relaxing, day trips to the seaside, visiting family and friends and perhaps undertaking some DIY or gardening activities. No matter what you decide to do, here are some tips that can help you avoid issues with your back and posture.

Day Trips & Travelling Abroad

When going out on day trips by car, you will be seated for most of the journey. You can help avoid any stiffness forming in your body by regularly shrugging your shoulders, circling your feet and clenching your buttocks. When you are able to stop for a break, take the opportunity to stretch and shake your arms and legs which will help your muscles relax.

If you are travelling long distances on a train or plane, try to stand up and move around every half an hour to an hour and avoid consuming too much alcohol as dehydration can aggravate any existing muscle pain. You can also help compensate for inactivity during your journey by going for a short walk once you have arrived.

Relaxing Indoors

If you want to just relax indoors watching TV during a bank holiday or playing some computer games. Try to make sure that you sit up with your back straight and your shoulders back and avoid sitting in the same position for long periods of time. Remember to take a break every hour.

You should also try to make the most of your time by fitting in a small amount of exercise if possible. You don’t have to go for a run, but even just a short walk with the family will help you remain active.

Getting Out in the Garden

Given the range of movements needed for gardening, it’s always difficult to maintain a good posture. However, a poor gardening technique can increase the load on your back muscles, risking injury to your muscles and joints.

Gardening is just like any other form of exercise, this means that you should always warm up first and do not wear clothes that restrict your movement. Begin with the lighter jobs, try to keep your gardening activities varied and take regular breaks. Get close to the plants that you are attending to and try to avoid overstretching. Using long-handled tools is recommended. You can find out more about maintaining a healthy posture in the garden by reading our blog post here.

Undertaking DIY

If you decide to undertake some DIY during the bank holiday, then make sure that any type of ladders that you use are firmly positioned on level ground. Always make sure that you are facing the steps with your shoulders, hips and knees facing the same direction and when you need to, either step up the ladder or move it rather than lean forwards or over-reach. Try to keep your head facing forward so you don’t over-exert your neck muscles and If you are painting walls or ceilings use rollers with extendable handles, holding them at chest height.

When buying heavy DIY products such as gravel or cement, try to buy smaller bags as they are easier to handle and carry. If you do buy large bags, then shovel the contents into smaller bags or use a wheelbarrow to move them if needed. If you have these items delivered to your home, try to have them dropped as close as possible to where you need them so you don’t have to move them at all.

If you find yourself injured from any activities during the Bank Holiday then talk to a chiropractor at Backworks on 01702 342329.