There’s nothing wrong with having a hobby. In fact, spending some time doing something you truly enjoy can be an excellent source of mental relaxation and an effective way to de-stress after a long day. However, some of the activities you engage in may not be good for your spine. Here are three common hobbies that may not be healthy for the spine as well as steps you can take to enjoy them in a way that won’t contribute to discomfort.
The walking involved in a typical game of golf is good for the spine, but swinging golf clubs can be bad for the back and neck. Repetitive arm and shoulder movements along with frequent twists and turns of the torso may contribute to osteoarthritis, a form of arthritis that affects the joints. In the spine, osteoarthritis can affect tiny facet joints and contribute to damage that affects spinal discs. The rotations and overextensions associated with golf can also contribute to additional discomfort due to preexisting spinal narrowing (spinal stenosis) and back spasms triggered by irritated spine-supporting muscles. Make golfing more enjoyable for your spine by:
Not all hobbies that negatively impact the spine are physically demanding. More than half of all Americans say their favorite pastime is watching TV. Nearly 15 percent prefer to spend their free time watching streamed videos, and almost 10 percent opt for video game playing. The poor posture associated with such activities can stress different parts of the spine and nearby muscles, ligaments, and tendons. If you are going to enjoy sedentary hobbies, incorporate some exercise into these activities by:
If your garden happens to include herbs, spices, and naturally grown veggies, treat yourself to some healthy dishes loaded with nutrients that are good for the spine. However, the bending and stooping often needed to plant perennials, place seeds, pull weeds, and pick up bags of fertilizer, soil, or mulch may not be good for your spine. If you tend to a flower or vegetable garden on a regular basis, minimize back pain by:
On the surface, there’s nothing wrong with any of the above hobbies, but you need to take the proper precautions while enjoying them. With less physically demanding activities like knitting and scrapbooking, your spine will thank you if you try to balance things out and get some regular exercise or stretch periodically. With physical activities like golf, biking, tennis, or bowling, be mindful of your posture, form, and technique and modify repetitive movements that place too much stress on certain parts of your spine. Lastly, talk to your doctor or a Beverly Hills spine surgeon if you experience any new or worsening back, neck, or nerve-related pain that doesn’t go away after a few days.
Get in touch with The Spine Institute to find out if you might need to undergo a fusion procedure or perhaps an alternative to spinal fusion. Beverly Hills patients trust Dr. Hyun Bae to help them find relief for their chronic spine pain. Call 310-828-7757 today to schedule an appointment.