Your Commute is Killing Your Back, Here’s How to Fix it

March 31, 2020 0 Comment
SF traffic, San francisco traffic, golden gate

Your Commute is Killing Your Back, Here’s How to Fix it

Commuting comes in many forms whether you’re driving or catching a bus, but most of them leave you sitting for extended periods of time, which can cause back pain. Although it may seem hopeless, there are some ways to combat back pain while commuting which are relatively easy to incorporate into travel.

Why is Commuting Bad on your Back?

Sitting for extended periods of time is all around horrible on your back, whether you’re commuting or not. Sitting for long stretches of time means that the muscles that support the spine are not being used. This can begin to atrophy which causes the discs between our vertebrate to become compressed and pinch nerves. Due to COVID-19, many people are now working from home. Though you may not have that long commute to work right now, you’ll still be sitting for a few hours at a time. These simple adjustments can ease your trunk since sitting for too long can cause back pain too.


Pay special attention to your posture, it can mean a world of a difference for your back. Try to sit upright, maybe with a pillow behind your lower back and relax your shoulders. If you take the bus, then it’s also good to stand for at least part of your trip. By paying special attention to your posture, you’ll be relieving the load on the muscles and disc in your back.

Switch Up Your Commute

amtrak commuters, commuting by bus

If you can, try to switch up how you commute. One day simply drive yourself, another day get a carpool with a coworker, or even take the bus. Each different situation requires a different posture which can help spread out the weight put on your back each day breaking the cycle.

Take a Short Walk

Back pain’s number one foe is walking. Walking usually helps take the pressure off your back and strengthens the muscles that support your spine. If your schedule allows it, either get off the bus a stop early, or take a short walk after parking your car. Many companies with desk jobs encourage employees to take walking breaks, take advantage of it.


For those of us that are not as self-conscious, you can try to use the handrails on buses to stretch. It doesn’t have to be anything crazy like toe-touches or full backbends, just some simple stretches to loosen up. Stretches will help you strengthen various muscles depending on which kind you do and they’ll also give your back a rest while you do them.

Get Professional Help

If all else fails, Muscle Activation San Jose can help. As a joint pain specialist, we assess the pain points and create a plan to relieve or eliminate pain. Believe it or not, the back and spine have joints. Back pain is typically why we see clients. Contact us for any of your joint pain issues.

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