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Do tall people have more back problems and why? This is one of those questions that is often thought about by the tall person as they struggle through their day to day life living with daily back pain.
With the amount of research done on this topic getting the right answer can be tricky, since it is still hotly contested in the research department.
1.5 X More Likely To Experience Back Pain
There is an answer that most of the studies agree on, which is going to be the closest to a consolidating answer you will find. Which is that tall people are up to 1.5 times more likely to experience back pain. A number of reasons can be the cause of this which is why it is such a contested question.
A number of simple things can be the cause of back pain in tall people. With posture and weight being some of the core reasons as to why tall people suffer back pain. Weight especially can be an issue that can cause back pain in not just tall people, but almost anyone who carries a bit too much extra weight.
Lower back pain does seem to be the most common type of back pain for taller people. This is in big part thanks to almost everything being set up for people who are 6′ and under. So you end up having to crouch and hunch over more then others which does effect the back.
One thing I’d like to mention for the the tall people out there. Just because you’re more likely to experience back pain doesn’t mean you should just suffer and deal with it. It’s highly recommended to get checked out and try to get help for it, since there is no research showing that tall people don’t respond to treatment.
One of best methods in trying to help with back pain is to have an approved exercise regimes and to try and find suitable products designed for tall people. By limiting the exposure to pressure and strain on your back, you are reducing the amount of potential back pain you can feel.
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Long Torso Back Problems
The proportions of one body can effect a lot of different things and ones proportion out of whack can cause pain, especially in the back region. Just because two people are 6’4″ tall doesn’t mean they’re both going to have the same torso proportions, or leg length. So one of them might get more back pain than the other because of there different torso proportion.
Someones torso can be the reason they get back pain. For example a shorter person who is 5’4″ may have a longer torso with shorter legs. This is what could be causing the issue for them. If a tall person was to sit on a standard chair which is not designed for someone of that height, the bodies posture isn’t correct.
The lower back suffers as a result of the legs being cramped and not being able to relax comfortably. The strain is always present and not a good thing for the back. Which is why a office chair with taller seat heights is recommended for people over 6 foot tall to aid in correcting the posture.
Maintaining Correct Posture Is Ideal
That’s just one of the many examples of someone whose torso can cause an increase in back pain. Being tall and having a shorter torso can decrease a persons flexibility making them unable to reach there toes while putting more pressure on the spine. This can cause a number of issues and is something a specialist should be involved with.
There are a number of things that can be the result of ill proportioned torsos, or the lack of size in ones torso. This makes it hard for some people to do the most basic of things without doing damage to their spine. Trying to change the way you do things can help while also trying to keep good posture at all times is key.
One of the best things you can do to help with the issues caused by your torso is to buy products that are suitable to your height. Items that can be adjusted to suit your height better. Such as an office chair with a high back rest, adjustable height lumbar support and a seat height that is relevant to your lower torso height. Doing this can help with the pain.
Sadly in some cases there isn’t a lot you can do to help with preventing the pain. With the best option to try and see a specialist to help with minimizing day to day pain associated with being tall.
What Can Cause Your Back Pain
The number of reasons that could be associated with the causes of back pain can be phenomenal. First and foremost, you should always consult a medical profession to help isolate the causes. Trying to diagnose yourself on the internet is probably not the best idea.
However, you can narrow it down to some of the more core reasons as to what causes back pain in people. While the back is quite sturdy, it does have a number of weaknesses that can cause it to be painful for people.
Most of the reasons can be helped in some way or another except for one in my opinion. Which is your height. As we discussed previously, your height and torso proportions can be a reason for back pain. You can’t change your height, but you can get things to make life a little easier for being tall.
Being on the heavier side can cause back pain as it puts excess stress on your spine. This can cause a lot of lower back pain so exercising when you’re able to is a good way to help prevent this.
Pregnant woman also get a lot of lower back pain because of the extra weight of the womb. The extra weight causes your normal center of gravity to be more forward, pulling away from your spine. Which puts more work on your back and causes the pain. A side note is a lot of males gain their weight in about the same area as a pregnant woman and get the same type of associated back pain.
Posture For The Tall Person
Someones posture is a sure fire way to cause an issue if it’s not correct. Posture is a big thing for back pain and not having the proper position can cause a lot of pain in the back. This does make it crucial to get the correct posture for when you’re doing anything.
As you can see there are a lot of reasons for back pain to happen. You should always remember to try and do your best to prevent it before it happens, and get help when it’s to late.
Correcting your posture can be as simple as practicing some at home stretches and exercises. This short video by a physical therapist outlines a number of ways you can assist your own posture from home.
Tall Person Products To Reduce Hunching
Sometimes there’s no way of getting out of a task that is going to be difficult for tall people. Something as simple as trying to do the dishes or mowing the lawn can be a difficult tasks that will cause you pain. It’s just unavoidable in this day and age.
Most things are designed for people who are 6′ and no taller. This is one of the things that makes it difficult for tall people. It feels like we are an afterthought since it’s hard to find things that will suit our needs. Thankfully there are some companies out there who are willing to go the extra mile for us tall people.
So the best thing you can do in this case is to find products that are designed for taller people.
Products To Assist Hunching Over For Tall Peoples
Hunching over has a lasting affect on the back and not a pleasant one. So as a tall person, minimizing the amount you have to hunch over on a daily basis can prove beneficial. Such as finding a stroller with taller handles so you can walk the kids, or long handle grass trimmers.
When you have to lean over for extended periods, like in the case of trimming the grass edges, your back can really take a beating. To the average height person, trimming the grass can be quite an easy experience, but for the tall person, its a nightmare. So ensuring you have the best products to assist in the reduction of your back pain is critical.
Even recreational activities and sports can be a burden for the tall person. Take golf for example. Most men’s golf clubs are too short for someone over 6 foot tall. Having to hunch over that far to reach the ball on your swing not only affects the swing, but also long term back pain.
Investing in a golf club for a taller golfer can and will assist in the reduction back pain associated with too much hunching over. At the end of the day, we all only have one spine. So its detrimental that we take care of it. Otherwise we could all be in for a lifetime of back pain.