Get Back in Line!
By Krista Elliott
Supermarkets: What would we do without them?
When it comes to providing sustenance for your family, you might have a small vegetable patch, or a fruit tree or two, but overall, the lion's share of your food probably comes from a grocery store or supermarket. Besides being a vital service in our community, grocers tend to employ a significant number of people.
What a lot of people don't realize is that working for a grocer can also be pretty stressful and physically demanding. Stocking shelves, working the cash, climbing up and down ladders to retrieve items, and wielding the mop when a butterfinger in aisle three drops a family-sized jug of juice — it can all add up to strain and pain for your muscles and joints. Why? Well, those activities involve repetitive motion of the arms and hands, standing for long periods of time, awkward reaching and twisting, lifting heavy items, and potential slips and falls. And that's not even including the Herculean effort exerted in separating stuck-together shopping carts! Seriously, are they deliberately designed to lock together like that?
Each and every one of those daily motions can increase the odds of painful subluxations and muscle strains. And if the employee is a teen (as many supermarket workers are) with a still-growing musculoskeletal system, the physical effects of these tasks could outlast the job by a considerable length.
Putting Happy Back in Your Cart
By taking care of your back every day at work, you reduce the chances not only of everyday aches and painful subluxations, but of more serious, job-threatening injuries like herniated discs. Here's how to protect your joints while you're at work:
- You get breaks. Use them wisely. Instead of just checking your Twitter during your break, do a few gentle stretches to ease any tight back, hip, and leg muscles.
- Your shoes can make a huge difference. Shoes that fit properly, provide good arch support and cushioning, and have a grippy, non-slip sole can be back-saving powerhouses.
- Try to maintain good posture at all times. Standing up straight keeps your spine in a comfortable, neutral position, and it also helps you maintain your center of gravity.
- Safety first. Talk to your manager or safety officer about making sure that flooring is secure, that you have secure rolling stepladders with handrails, and that you have a lift (or at least a helping hand) for heavy items.
- Take care of your back and joints. Regular visits to The Joint Chiropractic can be your back's best defense. The chiropractic doctors at The Joint know precisely how to figure out and treat the root causes of back and joint pain, helping you be more comfortable and helping your joints return to their optimal alignment. And routine chiropractic care helps make sure your frame is at its best, helping to prevent injuries in the first place.
So set aside your apron and pop by any of The Joint's 350-plus locations today. You don't even need an appointment, so a visit is perfect for fitting into your shift schedule regardless of how erratic it is. With regular care from The Joint, you'll feel great — no matter what work throws at you.