Back ache is very common and if you are over 35 years old, chances are you’ve got an on going back problem that flares up now and then. Although there are many culprits that can cause or aggravate the problem, cars are ‘just about the worst thing we can do to our backs’ according to car ergonomics expert and osteopath Bryan McIlwraith and so it is really important to do all you can to protect your back from unnecessary strain.
We all tend to buckle up with good intentions, sitting upright and removing slack from the seat belt. However, the vibration of the engine, driving over uneven surfaces, turning, braking and accelerating all lead to gravity causing us to slip down slightly in the seat.
A recent study asked stationary drivers to check the gap between their lower back and the seat. Over 95% of drivers reported at least 1 inch gap. It doesn’t sound much but it has serious consequences. This gap allows the pelvis to tilt up at the front slightly and this can lead to the lap belt loosening off and slipping off the hips and onto the stomach (see insert in the picture). Nearly all of the drivers with a gap behind them also had the seat belt resting over the stomach.
The loosened lap belt allows further slippage and poorer posture.
Driving in this position puts strain on the muscles protecting the spine and it is this that creates that nasty ache when we exit the car.
You can purchase a pack of 2 SHOFTs today! They make great gifts for friends and family… if you have children they can also help keep them more secure in their booster seats. For a limited time you can buy a SHOFT pack (2 SHOFTs) for just £24.99 (£10 off the MRP).