Lower back strain is a major occupational health problem. The majority of cases occur in individuals in their early 30s and 40s due to improper lifting, a fall, or an athletic injury. Many of these injuries can be prevented by staying in shape with regular exercise. You can also avoid muscle strain by maintaining good posture, using a chair with good back support, and using proper lifting and bending techniques on the job. If you work in a cramped position, get up occasionally and stretch to loosen stiff muscles. Don’t try to lift heavy loads by yourself. If your work requires you to lift, always bend your knees first, so you use your legs more, and your back less. When you bend, avoid twisting. Keep your spine straight. Should your lower back be strained, it’ll usually respond well to heat, physical therapy, and rest. However, chronic back pain is not normal; it’s a signal that something’s wrong. If you frequently have lower back strain, see a health care provider.