Total Health

Common tradie injuries and what you can do about them!

November 16th, 2022 by
Category: Back pain Dr. Kiara Davis Knee pain Neck pain Pain Shoulder pain

construction worker

In Australia tradespeople and labourers are ranked among one of the highest workforces for incidences of workplace/work-related injuries, making up 22.6% (almost a quarter) of professional injuries and 60% of serious injury claims. 

Most trades are labour-intensive and can be quite hard on the body, often leading to tradespeople having a few aches and pains throughout their careers. As Chiropractors, we see lots of tradespeople and we know how important it is for them to be functioning at their best. We also know how common it is for a tradesperson to push through the pain to get a job done. Pushing past the point of pain is a dangerous thing to do, when we feel pain and discomfort it’s our body’s way of letting us know something isn’t quite right – the more we push through it, the more dysfunctional we get. Knowing when to slow down and get some help is extremely important. A couple of hours from your week can save you a couple of weeks off work. Prevention is always easier than cure. 

Common types of tradie injuries

Many tradies have common complaints of lower back pain, neck pain and often shoulder and knee problems. Our bodies are made to be used, and whilst a week of labour-intensive work can run you down or make you tired, you should not feel extremely sore. 

Back pain

Most people will experience back pain at some point in their life, however, tradespeople have a much higher incidence rate of this due to the nature of their work. Back pain can be quite debilitating and frustrating. It can be high, low or in the middle of the back and can often travel or refer pain to other parts of the back or body. 

Back injuries such as strains, sprains, and disc issues can occur for many reasons such as a lack of mobility, incorrect lifting techniques, poor posture, and incorrect management of current injuries. Back injuries can be very debilitating as our spine is the centre of movement in the skeleton. Keeping active and ensuring you stretch and move your body will help maintain the health of your body and ensure you feel, move, and function at your best, helping you avoid those aches and pains. However, if you’re feeling aches, pains, or even little niggles, it’s really important to have it checked out by a health professional early on. As Chiropractors, we have a special interest in how the spine functions and will ensure we get you back on track. 

Neck pain

Neck pain is also a very common complaint amongst tradespeople –  looking up all day, crawling through roofs and wearing heavy PPE gear can take its toll. Neck pain can feel like limited movement, sharp shooting pain, it might be a dull ache, it may cause headaches and may even travel into the shoulders or arms. A little stiffness in the neck can quickly turn into a bigger issue which is why it’s a great idea to have spinal checks done to ensure you’re moving correctly. A Chiropractor will be able to assess your posture, the way your spine is moving, where your spine is lacking movement and will be able to tailor their treatment to your specific needs.  

Do not wait until pain/injury stops you from doing everyday activities!

Lots of people will wait until the pain stops them from being able to do their day-to-day activities before they get it checked out. This can lead to bigger issues and longer pathways back to normal. Most tradies work long hours leaving them tired and time poor, it is really easy to slip into the habit of putting your health on the back burner when you feel like this. So, if you’re reading this and thinking it might be time to put your health first, we are here to help, give us a call or book an appointment online.

Our 3 top tips for tradies to start feeling, moving and functioning better

  1.  Move your body outside work – find something you enjoy and do it often. 
  2. Eat a well-balanced diet that fuels you and makes you feel good
  3. Listen to your body when it is telling you something – there is always a reason and it is really important not to ignore it

Most importantly, do these three things in a way that you can maintain, there is no point in starting a gym class that you hate or eating food you don’t like. Find something that fits in with your life and can’t be put on the back burner. 


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