Jobs that require constant standing, such as nursing, teaching, construction, retail and many more, can result in pain and discomfort. It’s not uncommon to experience sore feet, aching joints and back pain. The good news is that there are several habits you can adopt to reduce your pain. Here are several suggestions you can adapt to your particular situation to improve your comfort throughout the day:
1. Do some stretching exercises. While you’re at work, when you get a break, try these stretches to relieve pain and pressure:
- Using a hard round object, such as a frozen water bottle or tennis ball, roll your foot back and forth over it while pressing down gently but firmly to massage the plantar fascia ligament.
- Do split squats by lowering one knee to the floor and leaving the other in a lunge position to relieve tension in the hips.
- Raise your leg and rest it on a flat surface for a hamstring stretch and roll your ankle for nerve stimulation.
2. Try some yoga. There are a few specific yoga poses that are especially effective in relieving pain from standing all day. You don’t have to take a class – just find a quiet spot at home and try these positions.
- Lie on your back and draw your knees into your chest. You may want to rock gently from side to side. This posture helps counteract the effect of gravity from standing.
- Sit down with your hips next to a wall, lie back and turn so that your legs are stretched out up the wall. This is a great way to relieve tired feet and leg muscles.
- Release tightness in your calf and hamstring muscles by kneeling on your knees and placing a small rolled up blanket between your calves and thighs. Gradually move the blanket back from right behind your knees to the ankles.
3. Change your stance. Pay attention to your posture – don’t slouch and also don’t favor one leg over the other for long periods of time; do your best to balance your weight equally. At the same time, however, do change positions frequently by resting one foot at a time. Take sitting breaks as often as is possible.
4. Use appropriate products. Technology has developed many items that can help relieve your pain, so be sure you’re taking advantage of as many as you can:
- Anti-fatigue mats: Ask your employer if this is an option, especially if you stand on concrete.
- A good pair of shoes: No more thin-soled sneakers – you need support and stability.
- Shoe insoles: A pair of orthotic shoe insoles to replace the sock liner in your shoes will provide the cushioning your feet need.
- Compression socks: Enhance circulation in your lower legs to get maximum blood flow to your muscles and relieve pain.
Standing all day long is no fun, but by using as many of these strategies as possible, you can make it easier.