Rothrock Chiropractic & Rehabilitation

College Football is Back for 2023 - Binge football without hurting yourself!

September 1, 2023

The Penn State Nittany Lions are back in action on Saturday night against WVU! Some will be lucky enough to attend the game at Beaver Stadium, while most of us will be watching on TV. What an exciting time with the return of college football!

With so many games coming up this weekend, watching college football on the couch all day can be so enjoyable. But, it can also lead to discomfort and pain if you’re not mindful of your posture and diminished activity levels. Here are five tips to help you avoid pain while sitting on the couch for extended periods:

  1. Maintain Good Posture: Sit up straight with your back against the couch’s backrest. Your shoulders should be directly above your hips. Avoid slouching or sinking deeply into the couch, as this can put stress on your spine and lead to back pain. Use cushions or pillows to provide lumbar support if needed.
  2. Take Regular Breaks: Stand up, stretch (we can show you effective and proper stretches at Rothrock Chiro), and walk around during commercial breaks or timeouts in the game. Prolonged sitting can lead to stiffness and discomfort, so make an effort to move around every 30 minutes to an hour. Don’t get too engrossed in the action!
  3. Stay Hydrated with Water and Snack Wisely: Dehydration is not healthy for lumbar discs, as this causes them to shrink down. Unhealthy snacks turn on inflammatory processes in your body, further contributing to discomfort and fatigue. Drink plenty of water and choose nutritious snacks like fruits, vegetables, and nuts to keep your energy levels up. Remember: everything in moderation is okay, including unhealthy snacks and adult beverages (for those of age)!
  4. Ergonomic Setup: If you have the option, consider using a coffee table or TV tray to bring snacks and drinks closer to you, reducing the need to lean forward or twist awkwardly. Additionally, if you’re watching for an extended period, use a lap desk or laptop stand to keep your screen at eye level to prevent neck strain. Consider making sure your TV is positioned at 12 o’clock in front of you to avoid your neck or back being twisted for long periods.
  5. Stretch and Relax: Incorporate some gentle stretches during halftime or between games. We have plenty of great stretches that we prescribe here for precisely these scenarios. Focus on your neck, shoulders, back, and legs to relieve tension. Deep breathing exercises can also help you relax and reduce stress. And yes, football is fun, but when you are deeply invested in your team, it can get stressful. Remember: watching games is for enjoyment!

Remember that prolonged sitting, even with good posture, can still lead to discomfort and pain. Mixing in some light physical activity during breaks and maintaining a balanced diet can make a world of difference in helping to reduce the negative effects of long periods of couch sitting.

Go Penn State, or whatever team you choose to cheer on! Above all, have fun, enjoy, and stay safe!