Driving related injuries

Driving for Uber (and Lyft) can cause long term health injuries, some that you might not think of. We think of diet, circulation, and that sort of thing, but there are other serious issues that drivers need to be aware of, and perhaps take care to avoid causing themselves permanent damage.


Back and neck pain

I remember my first day driving. I put in four hours before going home. It was non-stop, and I felt just fine… until I got out of the car. I could barely stand up straight! My back had been hunched in a sitting position for all that time, and when I stood up rapidly my back said “Whoa there, big fella, slow down!”

1574137315958.png


I cannot speak to any other individual’s health, endurance, tolerance, etc. But I know that back issues are very common, especially among people who drive a lot. Some questions to ask yourself: Is your drivers seat and driving posture on the healthier side of the spectrum? How is the lumbar support? Does your back hurt after a few hours of driving? Does your back randomly hurt on other days? Are your hips all the way against the seat when you drive, like they should be? Are you leaning forward, or leaned back? Do you slump sideways, or sit up straight?

Suggestion: Make an effort to GET OUT of your vehicle more often. Help people with luggage or groceries, even if they don’t need it. Open doors for little old ladies. When you are waiting 2+ minutes and aren’t sure how much longer it will be, get out and stretch. In between pings, wipe the bugs and stuff off your windows. Take time to go into a restaurant to get your food or coffee, instead of hitting the drive thru. Get out and walk around when you fill up the tank.

Oh, and sit properly.

1574137337313.png


Back pain is some serious stuff, so don’t treat it like it’s nothing more than a mild headache.


Knee pain

Your right leg works the gas and the brakes (hopefully), and your knee stays slightly bent during your shift. This can cause soreness and inflammation in your knee over time. Long time drivers know what I’m talking about!

Much like the back pain issue, the easiest solution is to get out and stretch from time to time. If you let it get bad and end up going to a doctor for severe knee pain, they are going to send you to physical therapy. At PT, there is not much they can do other than flex your leg and stretch. YOU CAN DO THIS ON YOUR OWN!!! Get out and stretch your leg muscles from time to time in order to minimize or avoid future knee issues.


Shoulder pain

Funny story, my left shoulder started hurting one day. It was a numb throbbing pain that would come and go. This went on for about a month. Then one day the pain jumped from a 2 to an 8 on the Richter scale, and I went to urgent care. They took X-rays and saw nothing wrong with my shoulder. The doctor told me it was arthritis. I countered that extreme pain from arthritis wouldn’t just appear out of nowhere like that, but she reminded me that I was getting old, and that the solution was to take medication (for the pain) for the rest of my life. Bah!

1574137352602.png


The doctor also sent me to a sports physical therapist, who explained in great medical detail how my arm resting on the steering wheel at a 90 degree angle (from the shoulder point) was causing abnormal pressure which the human body isn’t supposed to have. Now consider that I have been doing this for about 3 years, and I drive for 6-14 hours at a stretch…. No wonder my shoulder hurts so much!

1574137363075.png


The key to avoiding shoulder pain is bent elbows when you drive. If you drive with your hands at 10 & 2, make sure your elbows are bent. If you drape your arm over the passenger seat, bend your elbow. The body is not designed to have the arm extended straight out for prolonged periods of time.


Do your research

I wrote this chapter to raise awareness. It’s up to you to take the next step. We all have access to this amazing thing called the internet, and in between rides you can research all sorts of topics, such as “correct driving posture”. Take the time and do your homework. Prevention is MUCH better than PT care or surgery, trust me!


Hope this helps!
 
Mr T

Comments

NauticalWheeler

Well-Known Member
Those of you who do not take advantage of all of your time in the car to do max kegel reps are missing out on an opportunity that not a lot of other people have. You should be kegel'ing to muscle failure
 

fraqtl

Well-Known Member
I get the lower back issues quite often but most annoying for me is foot pain. I get this kind of stress ache along the top of my pedal foot. It goes from about the middle of the foot to the upper ankle/lower shin area. I haven't found any good ways of addressing that other than wrapping the area and taking a break.
That's your peroneus tertius muscle (or fibularis tertius as they call it now). All that raising of the foot (called dorsiflexion) puts a lot of strain on it, go see our local osteopath for management of the pain and as it gets used to working without being in pain it will strengthen like any other muscle will.
 

Wild Colonial Boy

Active Member
Back pain is the bane of truck drivers, reps, taxi drivers and, of course, Uber drivers. It is caused by long sitting resulting in your spine trying to drop out through your arse.
 

Uberscum

Well-Known Member
Back pain is the bane of truck drivers, reps, taxi drivers and, of course, Uber drivers. It is caused by long sitting resulting in your spine trying to drop out through your arse.
Agreed, Plus long periods of sitting causes sciatica, which I used to have really badly but it's just mild right now only pops up once in awhile and goes away quickly.
 

Uberscum

Well-Known Member
Aw mate, I get it sometimes. It’s a thorough pain in the arse!
I remember the first time it happened. This was around the year 2002... I was washing my windows at a gas station with a squeegee, and when I'm bent over to go to the other end it felt like somebody stabbed me in my lower right back. I was in the fetal position for 2 days, no matter what position I actually chose to lie in bed, it didn't matter. It was horrible.

Come Christmas time, my boss gave me a $100 gift certificate to a chiropractor next door, and the chiropractor told me it was from prolonged sitting, you can also get it from prolonged standing. He did a lot of stuff but it didn't help.
 

impact

New Member
I have been a commercial driver for decades and have watched so many doing what we do develop so many discomforting conditions that the list would read like a whos who. I believe that proper nutrition and quantum energy modalities incorporated into everyday activities with some attention to the nominal exercising activities will mitigate MOST complications.
 

nash801

Well-Known Member
Driving for Uber (and Lyft) can cause long term health injuries, some that you might not think of. We think of diet, circulation, and that sort of thing, but there are other serious issues that drivers need to be aware of, and perhaps take care to avoid causing themselves permanent damage.


Back and neck pain

I remember my first day driving. I put in four hours before going home. It was non-stop, and I felt just fine… until I got out of the car. I could barely stand up straight! My back had been hunched in a sitting position for all that time, and when I stood up rapidly my back said “Whoa there, big fella, slow down!”

View attachment 379265

I cannot speak to any other individual’s health, endurance, tolerance, etc. But I know that back issues are very common, especially among people who drive a lot. Some questions to ask yourself: Is your drivers seat and driving posture on the healthier side of the spectrum? How is the lumbar support? Does your back hurt after a few hours of driving? Does your back randomly hurt on other days? Are your hips all the way against the seat when you drive, like they should be? Are you leaning forward, or leaned back? Do you slump sideways, or sit up straight?

Suggestion: Make an effort to GET OUT of your vehicle more often. Help people with luggage or groceries, even if they don’t need it. Open doors for little old ladies. When you are waiting 2+ minutes and aren’t sure how much longer it will be, get out and stretch. In between pings, wipe the bugs and stuff off your windows. Take time to go into a restaurant to get your food or coffee, instead of hitting the drive thru. Get out and walk around when you fill up the tank.

Oh, and sit properly.

View attachment 379266

Back pain is some serious stuff, so don’t treat it like it’s nothing more than a mild headache.


Knee pain

Your right leg works the gas and the brakes (hopefully), and your knee stays slightly bent during your shift. This can cause soreness and inflammation in your knee over time. Long time drivers know what I’m talking about!

Much like the back pain issue, the easiest solution is to get out and stretch from time to time. If you let it get bad and end up going to a doctor for severe knee pain, they are going to send you to physical therapy. At PT, there is not much they can do other than flex your leg and stretch. YOU CAN DO THIS ON YOUR OWN!!! Get out and stretch your leg muscles from time to time in order to minimize or avoid future knee issues.


Shoulder pain

Funny story, my left shoulder started hurting one day. It was a numb throbbing pain that would come and go. This went on for about a month. Then one day the pain jumped from a 2 to an 8 on the Richter scale, and I went to urgent care. They took X-rays and saw nothing wrong with my shoulder. The doctor told me it was arthritis. I countered that extreme pain from arthritis wouldn’t just appear out of nowhere like that, but she reminded me that I was getting old, and that the solution was to take medication (for the pain) for the rest of my life. Bah!

View attachment 379267

The doctor also sent me to a sports physical therapist, who explained in great medical detail how my arm resting on the steering wheel at a 90 degree angle (from the shoulder point) was causing abnormal pressure which the human body isn’t supposed to have. Now consider that I have been doing this for about 3 years, and I drive for 6-14 hours at a stretch…. No wonder my shoulder hurts so much!

View attachment 379268

The key to avoiding shoulder pain is bent elbows when you drive. If you drive with your hands at 10 & 2, make sure your elbows are bent. If you drape your arm over the passenger seat, bend your elbow. The body is not designed to have the arm extended straight out for prolonged periods of time.


Do your research

I wrote this chapter to raise awareness. It’s up to you to take the next step. We all have access to this amazing thing called the internet, and in between rides you can research all sorts of topics, such as “correct driving posture”. Take the time and do your homework. Prevention is MUCH better than PT care or surgery, trust me!


Hope this helps!
Are you uber/lyft staff worried about now paying workmans comp and disability?
 
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