How to Fight Lower Back and Shoulder Pains

How to Fight Lower Back and Shoulder Pains

Translators, just like so many other office workers, sit at their desks for hours, sometimes oblivious to the world around them, lost in their files, CAT tools, research (or, let’s face it, on Facebook). When we’re swamped, we even forget to get up and stretch a little, not to mention have lunch.

Obviously, this routine is very bad for our health and soon we are faced with back and shoulder pains. Here are some common sense ideas to keep great posture and avoid unpleasant effects on our health:

  • Set a reminder to get up and do some exercise every hour or so.

If you’re not smokers and don’t have a reason to get up/out to enjoy your daily poison, then you should use the features of your many devices (computer, mobile phone or the good old alarm clock) to be reminded you need to take a break. If you take 10 minutes off every hour or so, to get up and move around or exercise, your back and shoulders won’t be slouched anymore.

  • Take a 30-minute walk every day.

When you’ve finished a large assignment and could use a break, instead of checking your Facebook notifications for the umpteenth time, put your coat and shoes on and go out for a walk. You might be surprised to discover there’s a whole world outside your home (if you work from home) or that the sun is shining, or a new store has just opened down your street, or that you could actually use that time to buy groceries.

  • Work out!

You can go to the gym a few times a week or work out on your own, at home, while watching a video with instructions on YouTube, for example. You can take up dancing lessons or go running in the morning. You can  climb up and down the stairs to and from the 8th floor and lift the bags of groceries. Well, you get the idea. 😉

  • Try working standing up.

Since I quite like my desk and wound’t want to give it up, I’ve been searching for a standing desk that I could use from time to time, just to be able to switch from sitting down to standing up while I work. There are a couple of models I like, but I’ve still got to find a carpenter to make them for me.

This is an Ikea model, but I’m sure there are several similar ones. I like it because it’s multifunctional: it could serve as a standing desk, a bookcase, a flower support, a table for mail, keys and all sorts of odds and ends. And I like white furniture. Haven’t got any though. 😀

Here’s another one, which comes with a seat option. You can get it out of the way when you want to stand up and pull it back when you get tired. It seems very fit for my purpose and it would even match the furniture.

The third example is one that would help me achieve two goals at once: working AND exercising. I wonder if you can focus on both things or how clicking and typing would work while treading on…

And now (drums, please!), ladies and gentlemen, get ready for the first prize: a great idea for a desk/bar, which can turn our evenings (and not only) into much nicer moments. Here’s the source. Now, where do I find myself a carpenter?

These are all very good ideas, which I need to put into practice myself. Have you got any other recommendations? Things that worked for you?

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