Telework : A second wave … of back pain!

2021/02/02 Home Education and advice

Telework : A second wave … of back pain!

Telework, or working from home, is one of the principal ways of working for the majority of us at the moment. This way of working may involve sitting in a relaxed type posture for endless hours in a chair.  The prolonged seated position can result in sitting on your sacrum with your back rounded. This description is the ideal posture….to have back pain!

Fortunately, there are several exercises that can help rebuild the muscles which are said to be too relaxed when sitting too long. Here are 4 exercises to do at home to relieve back pain caused by prolonged sitting:

Lumbar extension

In our daily lives, our lumbar spine is constantly rounded, especially when we are sitting at work, watching TV, riding in the car, or doing household chores such as bending down to do the dishes and loading the washer or dryer with laundry. As a result, performing the opposite movement will alleviate the stress on the spine and discs. The standing lumbar extension stretch, or bending backwards, will ensure that you maintain adequate mobility in both directions.

extension lombaire

Parameter: Do 10 repetitions after every 2 hours of seated work 


As a result of our rounded spine posture with prolonged sitting, the long muscles that run up and down the back are in a stretched position. In order to sit with the spine straight, we need to strengthen these back muscles so that they can support us for longer periods of time in a seated position.


Parameter: Do 20 repetitions a minimum of once per day


It is not just our back that is affected by this rounded back posture. Our gluteal muscles can be affected as well when we are sitting for an extended period of time.  With the hips bent, these important muscles are in a stretched position and will weaken over time. Therefore, it is important to work on these muscles when we have lower back pain.


Parameter: Do 20 repetitions a minimum of once per day

Quadriceps stretch

The last helpful exercise is the quadriceps stretch. Because the hips are bent in the sitting posture, the muscles in the front of the hip are in a constant shortened position. Therefore, it will be important to stretch these muscles as they will allow the spine to stay in a straight position when seated.

étirement quadriceps

Parameter: Hold the position for 1 minute for a minimum of once a day

These exercises can be done every day and will provide the strength and mobility you need to move from position #1 to position #2. For more information on this seated posture for work, please consult the article Workstation: Does an ideal posture exist?

Despite the tips, I am still in pain. What should I do?

If you feel like you need additional help, whether it is for advice or for an evaluation, we are here for you!  Book an appointment at our clinic with a physiotherapist. It would be our pleasure to help ease your back pain.

Despite the exercises, I am having trouble holding a proper posture during telework. What should I do?

It is normal not to be able to hold or tolerate a seated position for more than 8 hours a day. Taking breaks, varying your posture, and doing the exercises are highly recommended. We can also provide you with a lumbar roll. It can be placed between your chair and the lower back in order to decrease the rounded back posture from prolonged sitting. It can be used at work or in the car to keep good posture and ease your back pain.

bonne posture

I am not sure if physiotherapy can help me. What can I do?

It is normal to have questions when trying something new. We now offer the possibility to schedule a free orientation call with a physiotherapist to help you decide if physiotherapy is right for you!

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