Published on 6 Jul 2020

5 things you’re doing while staying safe at home that may be affecting your back health

Moojan Haidari
Communications & Fundraising Specialist, Ottawa 

Back problems are among the most common chronic conditions in Canada, affecting people no matter their activity level. 

For National Injury Prevention Day, staying safe at home means more than physical distancing, it means keeping yourself well and healthy while engaging in your regular routine.  

To help you do so, Carefor’s physiotherapists offer advice on ways to prevent straining or injuring your back at home.

 

1. Using your cellphone/tablet

There’s no denying it – we’re getting way more screen time than we used to. But without it, we’d be disconnected from our loved ones and the rest of the world.

Carefor physiotherapist Nanda Nair explains how to use your cellphone or tablet while maintaining good posture and preventing strain and stress on your joints.

2. Gardening

The warm season is upon us, meaning it’s time to put our green thumb to another test. As we tend to our garden, it’s equally as important to take care of ourselves.

Carefor physiotherapist Anupriya Anand explains the best positions, warmups, and basic equipment needed to reduce the risk of a back injury. 

 

3. Lifting

Whether you’re unloading groceries, cleaning out your basement, or simply picking something up, knowing the proper lifting techniques is key to preventing strain or an injury.

Carefor physiotherapist Karen Van Dijk explains just that and a few other tips to keep in mind.  

 

4. Cooking

Spending more time at home likely means more home-cooked meals. Maneuvering around your kitchen is second nature to you, but here are a few tips to always keep in mind.

If you’re standing for a long time, consider wearing supportive shoes. That said, take breaks when needed or sit while you prep. Try standing as close as possible to the counter and bring the food close to your body to maintain proper posture and avoid hunching forward.

Home-cooked meals at Richmond Care Home.

 

5. At-home exercise

Although proper lifting techniques, footwear, and good posture are important to minimizing your risk of a back injury, keeping your body strong and healthy is just as important.

Nursing students from the University of Ottawa, with the help of Carefor physiotherapist Matthew Claxton, have compiled six simple chair exercises that will help to improve balance and strength. 

 

 

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