back pain when standing for long periods of time


Some careers, at times, require standing up for long periods of time. Careers like construction, nursing, teaching, security, police officer, to name the few. Being on your feet for a long period of time can cause back pain. Below are 4 stretches that can help relieve back pain caused by standing for long periods.

Tiptoes to heels

– Transfer your weight from your tiptoes to your heels, back to your tiptoes and back to your heels. Repeat this a few times. When doing tiptoes to heels for the first time you may need to hold onto something waist height, like a side of a desk or table.

Transfer the weight of your body from one side to the other

– This can be done by bending one knee then the other. The knee that is bent will take your weight and take the load off the other side. In the older Victorian pubs there is often a foot rail around the bar, this is because when standing at the bar for prolonged periods, you could take the weight off your back and legs by lifting one leg and put it on the foot rail.


– Squats take the pressure off the lumbar spine by tilting the pelvis into a more anterior (forward) position. When standing for a long period, often the pelvis is pushed into a more posterior (backward) position increasing the lumbar curve and putting more pressure on the surrounding tissues, nerves and joints causing pain on your back. When you are doing squats for the first time, hold onto something waist height, like a side of a desk or table. Once you are stable, drop down into a very shallow squat. Go a little bit the first time then come straight back up. The second time you squat take your squat a little bit lower. Build muscle strength first before you squat a bit lower and remember to breathe when you squat.

The pelvic tilt

– By tilting the pelvis into a more anterior direction (like the squat), you will reduce the arch in your lower back, taking the pressure off that area. Whilst standing with legs apart, bend your knees a little then push your pelvis forward. Then go back to starting position. You can do pelvic tilt when standing or when lying on your back with both knees slightly bent.