Auto Europe

  • UNITED KINGDOM
  • Contact our Rental Specialists
    Car Rentals Worldwide
    Alamo Rental Car
    Avis Car Rental
    Budget Rental Car
    Dollar Car Rental
    Europcar
    Hertz
    National Car Rental
    Sixt Rent a Car
    Car Rentals Worldwide

    Blog Search


    Categories

    Searching Blogs......

    How to ease car aches and pains during your drive - Driving Safely

    After seeing Gridlock and Road Rage on Channel 4 last week it was interesting to find I spend around 12 - 15 hours per week (hpw) driving my car. Many of us today drive to work, often sitting in our cars on average a total of 6 weeks per year according to Friends of the Earth, that's approximately 20 hpw. 1 in 8 people worked a 48 hour week during 2007, according to the BBC, whilst the UK average is a 35 - 45 hour week. Add in the driving time and you've got 55 hours plus per week either working or travelling to work. There are 168 hours in a week, minus approx 60 hours work and 56 hours sleeping that leaves us about 52 hours free time. What do we do then - more driving of course! Shopping, trips away, taking the kids out or visiting friends for example.I'm sure, like me, you've uttered the words 'my lower back aches,' 'my neck is stiff' or 'my legs are sore' when getting home from your commute. Increasing congestion adds to the time you are already in the car sitting in the same position for long periods can be painful. So here are a few tips if you are stuck in the traffic nightmare or if you are thinking of going on a driving holiday with a hire car. Follow them for a fun, relaxing journey without the aches and pains:1. The first and most obvious is DO NOT STRESS! Easier said than done perhaps when we feel road rage boiling inside. However, if you know you're going to be stuck in traffic, day in, day out, then you must accept it. We'll all get to work in the end, so why stress?2. Everyone wants to cut down their driving time, but it's unlikely, so turn up your music, sit back and breathe. It's an easy way to relax if you're sitting on the M25 watching a snail travel faster than you are. Simply take a deep breath in and breathe out slowly counting to 10. This will give your mind a chance to become rational again.3. When we lounge on our sofa, we are free to sprawl, in our cars we must sit up and concentrate. That doesn't mean we have to completely sacrifice comfort though. I don't mean sprawl in your car (although it would be amusing to try!) Some things to remember:
    a. Check there is enough room above your head, it should be about fist size so you can stretch your neck and back.
     
    b. The head restraint should come to the top of your ears and be in physical contact with you in your normal driving position. This will help prevent whiplash if you are in an accident.
     
    c. Your seat should be set about 10% backwards so there is less pressure on your lower back. There are pillows available if this is uncomfortable, to keep your back in the natural S-shape, see Spinal Products
     
    d. Finally, make sure your legs are not stretching to reach the pedals.
    A useful website to help adjust the driving seat is Driving Ergonomics4. Traffic is the drivers' nemesis, the pain the feet suffer with the right foot on the brake and the left on and off the clutch can be constant. Put your handbrake on and your car in neutral for a short rest before going again. This eases the pressure on your feet so your body won't tense up so much if frustration kicks in.5. Are you tired? We can't pull over on the hard shoulder, have a quick power nap and take off again, so keep an energy drink in your car. Red Bull, Lucozade, something fizzy. However, it is advisable to pull over into a service station and nap for a few minutes if possible.6. Do some exercise. I'm not talking leaving your car and going for a jog (although you might get to work faster.) Here are some exercises to ease your body in the car, from head to toe:
    a. Roll your neck from side to side to help ease shoulder pain and tension.
     
    b. Pull your shoulder blades back and try to make them touch each other. Also roll them back, lifting them up to the ears and back down again. This is good for easing up the shoulders if you are sitting in a bad position.
     
    c. Stretch your arms out in front of you. Clasp your hands into a fist then release repeatedly to loosen up your arms and fingers.
     
    d. Hold your tummy in while you drive. It keeps the core strong. Also twist from side to side to help the muscles relax.
     
    e. Stretch your legs out in front of you. Move your ankles backwards, forwards and around to loosen them.
     
    f. If you can, squeeze your entire body and hold for 10 seconds, then relax. Repeat 3 times, then give yourself a really good stretch to get your whole body to relax.
    Finally, give yourself a little shake off to help you unwind.

    Blog Search


    Categories