Let’s face it: Commuting is easily the dumbest part of living in New York City. Overcrowded trains, construction delays, we’re over it--and so are our aching backs, feet and knees. We can’t keep you from accidentally getting stomped on with stilettos, but we can help prevent injury and reduce wear and tear during your long ride to work. NYC physical therapist Lynn Berman is saving the day with three tips for a pain-free commute.
Manspread while standing. We all know traditional manspreading is a huge no-no (and potentially illegal), but Dr. Berman suggests standing with your legs slightly wider than your hips, both while waiting at the station and standing in a moving train car. This evenly distributes your weight, preventing hip and back pain. It’ll also help you keep your balance if the train suddenly stops short (but still that’s no excuse to let go of the pole, obvs).
Watch your step. Racing up and down the subway stairs can cause or exacerbate knee injuries, so slow down and watch where you’re putting those ballet flats. Instead of stepping on the ball of your foot, place weight on your entire foot as you land on each step (unless you see a pizza rat, in which case, run like hell).
Sit like Helen Mirren. Check out the photo above. See how she’s sitting with her back up against the subway seat? This is your inspiration. Sitting up straight in the back of the chair with both feet on the ground helps you distribute weight evenly on your ischial tuberosities (a fancy word for “butt bones”), keeping your back and spine in alignment. Thanks, Dame Helen!