Top 5 Pain-Free Travel Tips using Chiropractic Wellness

Top 5 Pain-Free Travel Tips using Chiropractic Wellness

By Jen Araza on Dec 20, 2017 in Santa Barbara Chiropractor
Top 5 Pain-Free Travel Tips using Chiropractic Wellness

The holidays are indeed upon us, and it is that time of year when we scurry to finish our last-minute shopping, bake tons of yummy goodies for our neighbors and friends, and get in our car for a trip near or far to spend the holiday with family.

If you are one of the many who will be hopping in the car for a long ride full of audio tapes and lip sync battles (you do that too, right?), absolutely dreading it because you are wondering  how to safely get wherever you are going without spending your entire vacation in pain…well, this one is for you.


1. Roll Up A Ski Sock. Wedge something behind your low back while driving. This will push your low spine into a healthy position. We also sell AbMats in the office to use for this purpose!

2. Keep Your Heart Up! I understand that long stretches of travel can be tiring and draining, but keeping your heart up as best you can will keep you from putting unnatural amounts of pressure and strain on your low back. (hint: #1 will help with this…)

3.  Keep Your Abs Tight! Try this: tighten your abs to maximum capacity…now soften to only about 20%. THIS is where you want to be. We’re not saying keep your abs so tight that you can’t talk because you’re straining so hard. Anytime we are putting our body in an awkward or unnatural position, keeping your abs turned on is ALWAYS a good idea.

4. Get Into Ideal Posture, THEN Set Your Mirrors! Do not set your mirrors to your bad posture. Setting your mirrors to your ideal posture will be a gentle, but constant, reminder when you are starting to slouch.
5. Take Breaks! Taking breaks, done two ways…

First, sitting with ideal posture will take muscular endurance, so most of you will not be able to fix your posture in one day.  Set goals and build up strength. For example, start by sitting or standing in ideal posture for a minute, 5 minutes, 10 minutes, 1 hour…etc then take a break and slouch, it’s totally fine to do this!  This way you are in control of your body and won’t find yourself in bad posture and not know how long you’ve been there.

Second, take breaks while driving to move your body! When Dr. Nick and I moved here from Boston, we packed everything we had into our Expedition and drove across the country. I was still relatively new to the health scene, and well, Doc walks his walk, and one of the things we love about Doc is that he is relentless.

Needless to say, there were many times over the course of our 4000-mile journey where he strongly encouraged me to do things I didn’t necessarily want to do but did anyway because I knew it was good for me.
Like this…

Top 5 Pain-Free Travel Tips
(Proof that you don’t always have to be all smiles while “doing” healthy. Hey…it was cold, and I “didn’t wanna!” :-p)

In all seriousness though, we stop frequently on our trips now to do squats, jumping jacks, stretch, push-ups, WHATEVER…and I don’t care what anyone thinks 99% of the time now :-p

Ideas for road-side mobility:

Hamstring stretches
Hip openers
Spinal Hygiene
Life Extension Exercises
Tabata Exercises

With that, I wish you much love and gratitude to kick off this holiday season.

Drive safe, be well,