8 Tips to Decrease Back Pain From Travel

It’s summertime and vacations are in full swing. And while vacations may be about rest and relaxation,  it’s not uncommon to suffer back or neck pain from traveling. Don’t be the next vacation gone awry due to injury.

This summer try these tips to decrease the risk of the injury while on vacation:

  1. With travel comes prolonged periods of sitting. Bring pillows, towels, or even soft jackets to support your back for sitting. Prolonged sitting can leave you vulnerable to hurting your back.
  2. Plan for frequent stops. At each stop get up, stretch, and move around.
  3. While in route adjust your posture frequently to avoid static strain to your neck and back.
  4. When you’ve reached your destination, take several minutes to loosen up in order to re-activate your muscles, before unloading your luggage.
  5. When loading or unloading your bags, take the extra trip. Don’t try to carry everything at once. Use rolling carts or even the bellman if available, it is your vacation.
  6. Make sure to schedule some exercise while on vacation. Your body needs and thrives on movement. Try to include some walking, biking, or at least some stretching to help keep the body moving.
  7. For those going to the beach  “get out of the beach chair”. Yes even sitting in the beach chair too long can lead to unwanted back problems.
  8. Try to exercise just before traveling home. This will help your body be more relaxed and better able to tolerate being cooped up in the car or plane.

For more tips on staying healthy during travel contact us at Baudry Therapy Center.

Pilates for the Body and Brain

“Contrology is complete coordination of body, mind and spirit. Through Contrology you first purposefully acquire complete control of your own body and then through proper repetition of its exercises you gradually and progressively acquire that natural rhythm and coordination associated with all your mental and subconscious activities.” (Pilates 1945)

Above is a direct quote from Joseph Pilates explaining what he expected from the method that was later named after him, Pilates. Everyone agrees that we grow concerned about our physical limitations as the body ages. With age and decreased activity our neuromuscular connectivity becomes altered. By neuromuscular connectivity, we mean the brain to muscle connection which helps us coordinate movement and function.  We develop altered and ineffective movement patterns, which often lead to pain and dysfunction. Pilates is a method of training that, through it’s focus on postural stability and alignment, can stimulate and re-program our system to improve quality of movement.

By connecting the brain to the body as we move it, conscious movement gradually becomes automatic or subconscious. This is sometimes referred to as motor learning. For example, a slumped posture might feel normal due to the years and years of poor sitting habits. As we initially correct the slump by bringing an awareness to it, it feels awkward and requires repeated reminders.  Over time however, the brain inputs the sit and stand TALL reminders into the body as a constant, and the body realizes the change. The culmination of this process results in the slumped posture beginning to feel abnormal, and the sit and stand TALL posture normal. It becomes no longer a conscious effort but a subconscious one, much like blinking the eye.

In a typical hour long Pilates session clients are continuously directed to focus and connect the brain to the body. The result of increased conscious and subconscious brain work facilitates a natural shift towards the desired effect.  At Baudry Therapy Center, we use a holistic approach to wellness, including comprehensive Pilates methods to improve  form and function for active movement.

By Kathy Koehl

Pilates Instructor at Baudry Therapy Center

strength, balance, motion…for fitness, for life