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02/01/2014 at 11:09 am #74007
have you adjusted your seat for optimal position? things i would look at:
1. typically your shoulders are rolling forward due to the top “wings” in bucket seats and the fact that you have your arms reaching forward to the steering wheel for long periods of time. you should experiment with putting a towel vertically behind you to push your back away from the seat and give room for your shoulders to sit back into good position. you probably should be sitting closer to the steering wheel also to avoid shoulders drifting forward.
2. drive also with your hands on the bottom of the steering wheel versus always on top. this will reduce tension of holding the arms up. change your hand/arm positions whenever possible.
3. i’ve known people who drive with a peanut behind their lower back and just wiggle it around while driving. lacrosse balls may be too hard for long periods of driving, but yogatuneup balls are softer and may be more comfortable for longer periods of time. roll it around, then move it to another position and roll again. move it up and down your spine.
4. some people have put balls under their hams and glutes too. you can give this a try. roll around, move, repeat.
5. make sure your spine is supported in a good position. pretty much all car seats fail at this.
6. check the head rest. it typically forces your head forward – bad! in some cars, you can turn the head rest around and reinsert it back into the holes which will give your head more room to go back. also you may need to fill up the space in the seat itself to bring your entire body forward to let your head come back.
7. normal lumbar pillows are pretty bad. they put you into overextension and reinforce that position. i would look at the Gokhale method pillow: http://gokhalemethod.com/stretchsit-cushion. it hangs nicely from the head rest via straps and it gives just enough angle to the spine to be neutral and not overextended.
ultimately, being stuck in any one position for a long time is not optimal. as you’ve discovered, some of your muscles are just always tight. smash/mob whenever you can, in between your driving time. take the train or bus if you can! good luck.
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