How to Avoid Back Pain on Spring Break


Every spring, thousands of Midwesterners head south to hit the beach, watch baseball spring training games, or visit destinations like Washington DC or New Orleans. These spring break trips can create lifelong memories, but unfortunately those memories can be marred by back pain or injury for those who don’t prepare.

Spring break destinations may be relaxing, but getting to them is often a nightmare. Extended periods of time in an airplane or car, toting around heavy luggage and sleeping on unfamiliar beds can all wreak havoc on your back. Before packing those bags and buckling in for their trip, travelers are advised to review these back-saving travel tips.

1. Talk with your doctor: Let your doctor know where you are going and discuss the activities you are planning. Your doctor can clue you in on what activities are safe for you to enjoy.

2. Prepare for travel: Check with your transportation provider that the proper accommodations are available. Use a suitcase with rollers. Make sure to bring along essential medications and don’t forget to bring items that make travel easier, like a neck pillow heating pad or sleeping mask.

3. Prioritize: Plan your desired site visits and activities ahead of time, so you aren’t rushing around on your trip. Build in extra time for travel, especially if you’re visiting a popular tourist destination.

4. Stay loose: Frequently stretch your muscles to avoid getting stiff, especially if your vacation includes long periods of sedentary travel. Stiffness of muscles and joints often results in pain.

5. Dress right: Pack clothes that are comfortable and appropriate for the weather you expect. Also, be sure to bring along any braces or supportive devices you own in case you experience pain on your trip.

6. Understand your limitations: Don’t be afraid to skip a difficult activity and don’t be afraid to share that plan with people in your group. Take breaks if necessary. If you’ve been sitting all day, be sure to get up and walk around or stretch.

By following these six tips, you’ll be more likely to have a fun filled, pain-free spring break. Additional information about pain-free travel can be found on the Advanced Pain Management website, including a Travel e-Book.