Road trips and traveling can be a lot of fun. But we all have experienced aches and pains at some point either in long car rides or long plane rides.
Here are a few strategies to help minimize your trip pains:
- Bring a small pillow or a rolled-up towel and use them to support your back. Shift the position of the pillow or towel to alter the pressure on your back, as shown below. Be sure to adjust the seat position occasionally to redistribute your weight during the trip.
- Keep your muscles active by:
- Squeezing your “cheeks” to tighten your gluteal muscles. Hold for 5-10 seconds.
- Pulling your navel in towards your spine to tighten your abdominals. Hold for 5-10 seconds.
- Sitting tall stretching the back of your neck towards the headrest. Hold for 5-10 seconds.
- Prolonged sitting will inevitably make your muscles feel tight. Take time to stretch when you pull over at the next rest stop by performing the following stretches:
- Grasp hands together and reach overhead as far as possible. Hold for 10 seconds, 3 times.
- Reach your arms out to the side and squeeze your shoulder blades back together. Hold for 10 seconds 3 times.
- Perform back lunges, stepping back, into a lunge. For a little extra stretch reach the hands overhead. Perform slowly and do 5 on each leg.
- Finally, when you’ve reached your destination, take a few minutes before unloading your luggage to walk around, swing your arms, and stretch. This will awaken and prepare your muscles for action.
Utilize these tips to help alleviate road trip pains and feel better on your next road trip! And if you still have pain when you’re back, contact one of our Physical Therapists for relief!