Monday, July 15, 2013

Watch Your Back

When working around freight, you need to protect yourself.  In trucking, there are two main areas on your body that are prone to damage.  One is your back (your lower back to be precise).
And the other is your knees
There are several ways to protect these areas of your body.  First of all you shouldn't be using your lower back to do anything trucking related.  When you lift something, you should be lowering yourself to the object you are lifting while keeping your back straight.

You should use any steps on your truck or trailer to climb or descend instead of hopping up or jumping down.

When sitting in the driving seat or the passenger seat, you should keep your legs at a 90 degree angle from your back angle. 

One of these lumbar supports has served me well over the years.  This one allows airflow through it and behind it so that your back wont sweat.  If you use it properly and every time you drive, it will save your back.  Of course every person is different and you should experiment with what works for you, but you should take every step you can to protect your back.  It's the only one you have.

Lastly the most important deterrent you can use to prevent injury is moderate daily exercise such as walking around the truck stop or doing low impact aerobics.  If you don't stay active, you will lose your muscle tone, bone density, and healthy heart.  Over the years, trucking will break you down and you will be subject to diabetes, heart disease, back problems, knee problems, hypertension, breathing problems, and so on. 

You must maintain a healthy lifestyle to last in trucking or you will end up at the end of a long career in far worse condition than you can afford to be in.  Do yourself a favor and protect your knees, back, heart, and overall health by being careful, getting moderate exercise, and keeping injuries at bay.


Ms Hanson said...

All my trucking years I brought along a little pillow for my lower back, even to interviews and driving tests! Chiropractors are amazed to note the excellent condition of my spine.

Curious about breathing problems as a recognized issue. Any links?

Ed said...

Breathing problems? Can you elaborate?

M Hanson said...

Late onset asthma. I never smoked, nor did anyone in my house or truck. Learning that thyroid issues may contribute, but curious about breathing issues relating to trucking.

Ms Hanson