20 Mar Desk jobs are the devil
Literally. They are ruining you. Having worked as both a Remedial Massage Therapist and a Chiropractor, I’ve seen it all. Every tight muscle, every restricted joint, and every person wondering why their body is so ‘tight for their age’ or that they ‘haven’t done anything’ that could explain why they are suffering from back pain.
Today I had a lightbulb moment, and it’s all thanks to my partner. A tradie, physical work everyday for long hours, who only ever rarely mentions a ‘bit of a tight spot’, and still never wants any treatment for it (even though he can have it for FREE!!). Originally I thought he was being a tough guy, who was surely in need of an adjustment and some soft tissue, muscular work, but was putting it off (general male behavior).
However each time I’d adjust him I was surprised at how little he needed done. Today was the clincher for me. A long week of work and overtime, and I thought I’d make his life a whole lot better with a back massage. Such a nice girlfriend, because what else is better than working for free on a Friday night!
Well I was genuinely in shock, waiting for a tight muscle, waiting for him to flinch, waiting for a yelp! As I worked my way through the upper back, I realized I’ve felt tighter muscles on an in shape female, or a stressed mother, or a desk working ANYBODY. Just anybody. It got me thinking about other tradies I’ve seen. Usually they come in with a specific injury… like ‘I bent over and picked this up and now I feel pain’. Cool. Very clear. Obvious injury.
Whereas, the majority of people we see in clinic present with an insidious, or seemingly random pain, that can’t be attributed to anything. But guess what. It can. The clients we see who have the worst musculoskeletal conditions are… you. You go to work, and have to sit at a desk with a computer. You come home and lay in bed with a stack of pillows behind you. You shop online or go on Facebook on your phone in bed. Your bodies are aging faster than those who are physically active all day.
Don’t get me wrong- those people need attention too, because it does catch up to them. But from our perspective, the way your muscles and joints feel at 23, 34, 50 Year’s old because of your desk job, is way worse. And you’re already feeling it arn’t you!
So what’s the moral of the story? Well, we know movement is good for spinal health, and general joint health. So if you’re at a desk all day long, it’s time to start thinking about adding more movement into your routine. Stand and stretch every half hour, go for a walk every lunchtime, and if this doesn’t seem like a likely option at your work… reconsider your priorities. This is the body you have for this life. How do you want it to move and feel in old age? Adjustments help your joints stay mobile. We find those stuck spots and give them movement again. As well as decreasing muscle tension and pain.
I said to my partner, and this may sound morbid, ‘please donate your body to science when you die’ just so that students can see what a physically active and healthy body can feel and look like! Remember, we are still physiologically the same humans that existed thousands of years ago, our natural and normal existence is to MOVE. Not sit at a desk and stare at a screen.
About the Author
Dr. Nadine Toussaint is one of our amazing chiropractor at Balanced Life Health Care. She is passionate about chiropractic care for all ages including during pregnancy and for kids. To find out more about Dr. Nadine click here or to book a consultation click here. For more from Dr. Nadine you can visit her personal blog here