Long flights or roadtrips can be a real pain in the back! Avoid cramping and other pain when you get to your destination with these five tips for protecting your back while traveling:

  1. Keep moving. It can be tempting to get in a few hours of sleep on a long flight or drive through the night to get to the family festivities. The best thing you can do for your back, though, is to get up and move. It will save you from being stiff when you arrive at your destination.
  2. Stretch it out. Along with getting up and walking, it’s a good idea to stretch a bit. Touch your toes. Stretch the quads. It will keep the blood flowing and prevent cramping.
  3. Pack Light. It can be challenging to pack light when you have a bag of gifts and a winter coat. The more you can ship to your destination rather than bring through airports, the better you will feel post-flight. You will also save added bag fees when you check-in for your flight.
  4. Hot and cold packs. If you’re prone to back pain, especially low back pain after an extended period of time sitting, bring along a pack that you can heat or cool to keep your muscles happy while traveling. If you are treating a back injury, make sure you follow the doctors recommendations for use of hot/cold packs.
  5. Scheduling. If you can guess a time when flights will be less packed or drive at non-peak hours, you will be able to have extra space – whether it’s on the plane or on the road. If you’re driving, you may arrive at your destination sooner by avoiding rush hour. If you’re on a plane, you’ll have more room to stretch while in-flight.

Holiday travel doesn’t need to be a pain in the back when you plan ahead! Protecting your back while traveling can be easy if you know how.