Dear Aching to Know:
You're not alone in your discomfort—many people feel pain in their lower backs after a few hours on their feet.
The exact reason can vary, but more often than not, the root of this pain is postural. Your posture, which is how you position your body in space, can play a crucial role in how you feel. For many reasons, including the large amount of time we spend sitting, the muscles that support our spines (like our abdominal and back muscles) tend to be weak (Ussery, 2018). When we stand, these weak muscles slowly give way to gravity. We slouch, arch, sway, or lean to relieve the pressure, but eventually our muscles spasm and our joints ache from the extra work—resulting in the likely cause of your discomfort.
The rest of your body’s posture may play a role, too—for example if you stand with locked knees or with more weight on one foot, your low back can feel the pull. You could also have an underlying back issue that may contribute to your pain such as a strain or sprain, a disc injury, a nerve injury, or depending on your age, an issue such as spinal stenosis.
To find the cause of your pain, schedule a personalized assessment with a care team that sees the whole you, from head-to-toe. The solution may be as straight-forward as fixing the way you stand.