Alleviate Back Pain on Road Trips!

March 17, 2016


Get comfortable immediately Take the time to make sure 

you're comfortable from the 

moment you set off on your 

trip. The smallest irritant in 

the beginning of your trip can 

turn into raging pain later. 

Don't have your wallet, cell 

phone, or anything else in 

your back pocket, as that may 

throw your spine out of 


Sit as close to the steering 

wheel as possible without 

compromising your safety and 

sit up straight with your knees 

slightly higher than your hips. 

Keep your chin pulled in so 

that your head sits straight on 

top of your spine. 

Make your ride as smooth 

as possible 

If the bumps in the road are 

the worst part of the trip for 

you, consider these options: 


A passenger car, rather than 

an SUV or pickup, may 

provide a much smoother 



Replacing worn shocks on 

the car can limit the bounce 

in the car 


Similarly, replacing worn 

tires can a be helpful. Some 

people find that a slight 

reduction in the tire pressure 

can also smooth out the ride 


Consider sitting on a pillow 

made for a chair seat, such 

as a coccyx pillow, or a car 

seat cushion, to provide a bit 

of extra cushioning between 

you and the road 

Bring along a cold pack 

If you have back pain, it may 

be a good idea to bring an ice 

pack or cold pack along in the 

car with you. 

Most back pain is 

accompanied by inflammation. 

Applying a cold pack can 

reduce the inflammation and 

numb sore tissues. 



 Chiropractic Care 

 Muscle Release Therapy 

 Cervical and Lumbar Traction 

 Therapeutic Exercises 

 Electric Muscle Stimulation 

 Rehabilitative Exercises 

 Graston Technique 

 Kinesio Taping 

 Cryotherapy/Heat Therapy 

 Whole Body Vibration Therapy 


"We offer a FREE consultation to make 

sure you are in the right place. We are 

patient focused and committed to your 



Warm up your muscles 

Many people find that warming 

up the lower back is a good way 

to alleviate pain on a long road 



Keep a heating pad in your car, 

and use a power converter to 

plug it into your cigarette 

lighter or dashboard power 

source and turn on your 

heating pad when you need it. 


If you prefer moist heat, you 

can buy a reusable heating 

pack and heat it in your 

microwave before getting in 

the car. You can place this 

between your lower back and 

the seatback in place of using a 

lumbar pillow. 


Another option is to try using a 

long lasting (e.g. 6 hours) heat 

wrap that has uses adhesives 

and is applied directly onto 

your skin. This type of heat 

wrap provides a low level of 

continuous heat. 


Some cars have heated seats, 

which deliver a continuous low 

level of heat and can be used 

to keep your lower back 

muscles warm. 

Support your back with your 


Supporting your spine starts with 

bottom-up leverage from your 

feet. Place your feet on a firm 

surface and at the right height to 

avoid transferring stress to your 

lower back. It is ideal to have 

your knees at a right angle — if 

your seat is too high it is best to 

put your feet on a footrest. If 

you are the driver and have the 

ability to use cruise control for a 

longer drive, you may want to do 

this to allow you to have both 

feet on the floor for periods of 



Employ diversions 

While it seems obvious, it bears 

repeating that taking your mind 

off your pain can be surprisingly 


Even if you're the driver, there 

are still a few options to help 

occupy your mind: try a new 

music channel, download a 

podcast or listen to an audio 

book. Your local library will have 

audio books you can check out. 

If you're the passenger, then 

you have quite a few choices: 

meditate, read, try a new 

crossword puzzle or sudoku, try 

a new app or electronic game, 

watch a movie or a TV series 

you've always wanted to 

will take some planning, but 

having something planned to 

occupy your mind could become 

a real asset on your trip. 


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