Tips to Avoid Thanksgiving Back Pain


Thanksgiving is finally here! It is a time to spend with family and friends eating, laughing, and relaxing. You probably already have your holiday plans all worked out, but have you stopped to think about how to protect your back this Thanksgiving? Thanksgiving can actually pose some real risks to your joints and spine. So, if you are planning on spending the evening on the couch, make sure it’s because you want to, not because your back pain is forcing you to. Here are our tips to protect your joints and back.

Heavy Lifting

Whether you’re having a large gathering at home or traveling to visit family, there is bound to be some heavy lifting involved in your Thanksgiving holiday. It could be from hauling luggage in and out of the car or even lifting a heavy turkey out of the oven. You would normally want to bend and lift at the knees when moving heavy objects. When it comes to taking the turkey out of the oven, the oven door setup might make that impossible. If you have a particularly heavy bird, get help from another person. Each of you can stand on one side of the oven door and lift. While it isn’t the ideal form, it certainly beats trying to do it yourself and putting yourself at risk for subluxations.

Meal Preparation = Lots of Standing

Prepping your Thanksgiving dinner can mean a lot of peeling and a lot of chopping, which is usually done standing up. This can cause strain and fatigue to your back and leg muscles, and even compression of your spinal discs. Grab a stool and sit at the counter and do the potato peeling at the kitchen table. Don’t forget to plan ahead. Most of your vegetables can probably be prepped the day before, which will save you from too much standing on Thanksgiving day.

You Eat? You Help.

You’ve probably experienced it before: Thanksgiving dinner ends up being mostly prepared (and cleaned up) by one person in the family. Instead of having one person do everything, delegate some tasks. The older kids can get to work prepping vegetables while the little ones set the table. And those that are lazing about on the couch? They can set up the buffet line or carry dishes out to the table. When the work is spread around, you save your muscles from fatigue, strain, and misalignments.

Prepare with Good Footwear

We all want to look our best for Thanksgiving dinner, but meal prep isn’t the time to wear those high heels or nice shoes. Choose a pair of supportive and comfortable shoes while preparing for your feast. That simple step will help keep your pelvis, hips, and knees aligned. Shoes with good grip will also help reduce the risk of damaging your back with a slip and fall accident. Simply keep your nice shoes nearby to slip on when company arrives.


If all of the Thanksgiving preparation, don’t forget to take some time for you. Regular chiropractic adjustments will have your body in great shape, and will also allow you to sneak away from your obligations for a bit and relax.

Thanksgiving dinner is a lot of fun, but also a lot of work. With our tips and tricks, you’ll be having your best Thanksgiving yet!