In our previous health-focused post here, we offered suggestions to assist truck drivers with staying hydrated while on the road. In this post, we want to tackle a common problem within modern society: posture and back pain. At Roane, we believe healthy, happy truckers make the best and most alert drivers on the road. How do you work to maintain a healthy lifestyle when you are on the road for 8+ hours a day? Hours of sitting and being on the road make it more than easy to establish unhealthy posture. Instead of being another unhealthy statistic, wellness can be maintained while on the road. Finding a balance to offset the hours of sitting does not have to be impossible, nor expensive.
What Defines “Good” Back Posture?
Creating good posture takes work. Our lives make it quite easy to slump and allow our shoulders and ribs to sag or round. Good posture is a way for your body to sit, stand, walk, and lie in such a way that the least amount of strain is produced on the supportive muscles and ligaments of your spine. This involves keeping bones and joints in proper alignment, preventing the spine from becoming ‘stuck’ in abnormal alignment, and preventing fatigue, strain, overuse, backache, or muscle pain.
As a truck driver, you spend the majority of your day sitting. One way to correct posture is to create a ‘backpack’ for posture using a yoga strap, this is an inexpensive way to improve alignment and is demonstrated in this video. It is essential to also make sure that your mirrors are in the best position during your pre-inspection so that your neck does not have to rotate unnecessarily to look at each mirror, you should simply have to turn your eyes. To check if you are utilizing proper alignment while sitting behind the wheel, the following factors are considerations:
- Back is straight, shoulders are back, buttocks should touch the back of the seat
- Arms are lengthened and comfortably supported by the steering wheel
- Bend your knees at a right angle and ensure that your knees are even with or slightly higher than your hips
- Distribute your weight evenly between both hips
- Avoid sitting in the same position for more than 30 minutes at a time
- Use a back support at the curve of your back
- Move the seat close to the steering wheel to support the curve of your back
Roane Transportation cares about the health of their employees, we will be continuing our healthy truck driver series, so be sure to keep coming back! Our goal is to support an environment of happy and safe truck drivers. If you are interested in joining our team more can be found by clicking HERE or contacting us online HERE.