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How to Alleviate Back Pain from Too Much Sitting

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Sitting for one hour correlates to a decrease in life expectancy of 21.8 minutes, according to an October 2012 study from the British Journal of Sports Medicine. In this study, they found that on average, people sit for 50-70% of the day. Sitting also puts increased pressure on the discs of our spine and can cause  back and leg pain. As a physical therapist, I frequently treat patients who have low back pain, sciatic pain, and hip pain caused from prolonged sitting.

There are several simple lifestyle changes that can give you pain relief and lengthen your life expectancy. First, try to devise a workstation that can support your laptop so that you are not sitting all day. We found great ones on Amazon that telescope up or down on wheels so that we can move them around the clinic whenever we are working with clients.  If you're at home, you also have the option of placing your laptop on the kitchen counter while watching TV or browsing the internet.

saving your back and your life by not sitting all day

Secondly, try walking to meetings with colleagues or meet while you walk. This can work with friends,too. I meet with my best friend one day a week and we catch up on each others lives while walking.

Through a personal commitment to a lifestyle change, we can elongate our lives and enjoy our health!  

Contributed by Nancy K. Whelan, PT, PA @

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