If You Want Lower Back Pain Relief, This One Thing Is Making It Impossible!



If you have got lower back pain, there is one thing in particular that is making it worse.


And you are probably doing it right now!


And if you are doing this one thing a lot, you will always have trouble getting any lasting relief from lower back pain.

Well, you may or may not be surprised to know that it is sitting!


Couch potatoYes, that’s right. Sitting. Something we all do every single day, and it is creating chronic back pain.

If you sit for long periods, there is virtually no chance that you will ever have lower back pain relief.

A recent study published in The Annals of Internal Medicine and reported in The Washington Post has also found that prolonged sitting increases your risk of early death from health problems by 24{95f364b8aea3ba4afb976a81c1dcc2e8147daac1866ef443968911255633a999} compared to people who sat less.





Why sitting causes back pain is actually quite easy to understand when you have a look at the basic mechanics of the spine.



Lat SpineLumbar lordosisAs you can see, the natural position for our spine is in an upright posture. Our lower back, or lumbar spine, has an arch in it called a lordosis. Between our shoulder blades, the thoracic or dorsal spine, curves slightly forward (kyphosis), and our neck curves back in a small lordosis like the lumbar spine.




This is the normal healthy shape of your spine. Whenever we are not in this posture for extended periods of time, it creates an increase in strain on your back.




In the sitting position, most people have a tendency to slump forward, particularly if you are sitting at a desk. When the spine curls forward in this slouched position, it compresses the spinal discs, and stretches the posterior spinal ligaments. No back pain relief when this is happening!


Bad sitting posture



This is fine for short periods of time, but the general consensus is that sitting in a slumped position for longer than 20 minutes is likely damaging your spine. That is not very long at all when you consider how long you sit for each day.




The key point to remember here is not to sit for extended periods of time. Ideally get up every 20 minutes and move around, even if it is just for few seconds, it will break the posture you are in.


Good Sitting PostureSitting postureAlso be aware of how much you are slumping forwards, particularly at the desk or computer (click here to learn how to set up your ergonomic desk properly). Try to sit up as straight as possible. This can be uncomfortable at first as your postural muscles may have weaken considerably if you do sit a lot. If you are a member of TBPN you will glad to know that the program will actually be strengthening your postural muscles again. This will not only help your back pain, but also improve your posture.







I personally believe that sitting is the No.1 back killer and will severely limit your ability to get lower back pain relief. Extended sitting puts unnecessary stress and strain on the spinal structures and weakens the supporting muscles. Not only that, but with people becoming more and more sedentary, particularly in the work place, we need to really be conscious of the amount of time we are sitting for. You will have ongoing back problems unless you can change your sitting habits.


To find out what else can aggravate your bad back, click here.


If you have any questions, or would like to share your own experience, please leave us a comment below.


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  1. Yes I do have some lower back pain and yes I am sitting in my computer chair in the position that you have shown. Thank you for this great advice.

    • Hi Jason,

      It is very hard for many people to remain sitting in an upright position for long. This is basically because our postural muscles are so weak, FROM SITTING, that we just can’t hold ourselves straight!


  2. Sitting for long hours can restrict blood and circulation around the body which, in the end, can also cause a lot of problems.

    This post makes lots of sense to me.


    • Hi Cathy.
      I have heard it said that sitting is the new smoking! Scarey when you think that most people probably sit for several hours every day.


  3. Hi Brad, Great article. I’ve experienced everything you’ve said there. I do a lot of sitting, especially in front of a computer (like I’m doing now!). I actually sit on a swiss ball instead of a chair to make my body work a little. But definitely getting off our ass is what we should be doing a lot more of!

    • Hi Scott,
      I often use a swiss ball too! What’s great about them is that there is just that little bit of instability, so you are always having to move slightly. Plus you tend to sit up straighter as well. Thanks for reminding me, I will do a feature post on swiss balls down the track!


  4. Hello! Great information offered here! My mother has been suffering from back pain for many many years and this is mainly because she works a lot on the computer and not exercising enough. I should definitely show her this article. This is so helpful and informative! Thank you for sharing. I will be visiting for more info!

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