Something as menial as washing dishes used to be a painful experience and sailing once a week left me in agony for hours afterwards. I realised that I needed to find a way to get back pain relief but didn’t do it until a couple of years later because I thought it would just go away.
Instead of getting the medical attention I needed, I let my pain worsen, stubbornly thinking that it would eventually work itself out. I have always been active and have always loved water sports. It wasn’t until I started to develop shoulder pain while surfing (on top of the back pain), that I realised enough was enough.
Although I am an employee of HumbleWorks, I have a story to tell which many people will relate to. The whole blog post is a true reflection of my back pain problems, and the lengths I went to in order to find the solution.
From back to foot pain and everything in between
I decided to visit a physiotherapist for treatment. After six sessions, my shoulder pain had mildly receded, but I still wasn’t able to bend my arm at the elbow and turn my arm outwards. After many more uncomfortable months with back and shoulder pain, I started to develop pain in my feet as well. I visited another physiotherapist for 8 more sessions.
It turned out that my shoulder and foot pain were all symptoms of the issues with my back.
Although I was starting to understand what was happening to my body, and although I was able to get rid of the foot pain, my back and shoulder were still not anywhere close to being healthy and functional. After many more painful dishwashing tasks, and loads of uncomfortable surf sessions, I visited a Chiropractor.
Desk jobs and Chiropractors
My job confines me to a desk every day all day. I used to sit down, crouched over my keyboard, muscles taught with stress and shoulders rounded in anticipation. Yes, I have always been a bit tense, and now this was causing havoc with my body, never mind my mental state.
I visited a chiropractor who said that because I was stressed and had spent years hunched over a laptop, my posture had deteriorated, and the right side of my back was working a lot harder than the left side (I’m right-handed). He recommended a few more sessions and said that I should invest in a standing desk, to get me working in an ergonomic position. Find out what this Chiropractor had to say about the HumbleWorks standing desk!
Unfortunately, I didn’t rush out and buy a standing desk, but I did continue the treatment. I eventually reached a point where the therapy had only provided some relief. My shoulder pain had retracted, and I had full mobility of my right arm again. Surfing sessions were also free of shoulder pain, but not back pain.
So, progress was being made, but the chiropractor eventually advised me to get a scan and possible x-rays, as the back pain was still an issue. I visited an NHS physio who advised that I would probably need to do a series of exercises every day for the rest of my life.
Because of slouching over my laptop for so many years, my lower thoracic intervertebral discs had compressed substantially, leading to my back pain issue, which led to my shoulder pain, which also led to my foot pain.
Three things have improved my back pain and mobility
I have seen immense improvements in my back pain due to three factors:
- I do a series of exercises every day to relieve the pain and to strengthen my back and shoulder muscles.
- I underwent chiropractic and physical therapy over a period of 12 months.
- I now work every day with a Stan 1 HumbleWorks standing desk to ensure my shoulders are back, my spine is straight, and my chin is lifted up.
Without a doubt, my pain is more bearable and although it’s a long road to complete freedom, I am on the mend and am able to do all of the things I used to love doing, with a lot less pain.
The thing to understand is that our bodies are not meant to be slouched over for so many hours a day, month in and month out. If we were, there wouldn’t be a growing number of people across the globe who experience these, and other health related problems related to sitting at a desk everyday.
If you’re experiencing back pain, don’t leave it and think it will fix itself. It probably won’t. Consult a Chiropractor or physiotherapist and speak to them about rehabilitating the affected area and if an ergonomic standing desk would help your pain.
Don’t let it get you down, there are solutions, and help is available for you to improve your posture and get you on the mend. Good luck with your journey to recovery, and remember ‘shoulders back, chin up – own your work day!’