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How to stay injury and pain-free this Christmas period

Are you lucky enough to be going away this Christmas holidays; perhaps camping or on an overseas trip? While it’s always an adventure to be travelling for the Christmas holidays, being on the road often means compromising on comfort. 

Lengthy drives, long haul flights, unfamiliar beds and falling out of routine might leave you feeling uncomfortable in your body this Christmas. Whatever holiday activities you’ve got planned we’ve simplified how to have pain free holidays. Let’s dig in. 

Bring Your Own… Bedding

There’s nothing nicer than snuggling into our familiar beds at the end of a long day of holiday activities. But the comfort of our own beds is something we forgo on holidays; you might be sleeping on a blow-up mattress during a camping trip, or in an uncomfortable motel bed on a road trip. Or you might find yourself on a long haul flight, wedged in seat 5E on your way to an exotic holiday destination. 

While none of these scenarios are forever, there are ways to make yourself comfortable.

One of our top tips for a pain-free holiday is to BYO bedding no matter what your holiday plans are:

  • If you’re camping, invest in a mattress that gives you extra support. 
  • If you’re travelling in your car, make room for your own pillows so you can always rely on a comfortable night’s sleep even if your accommodation standards are questionable. 
  • If you are travelling on a plane, pack a travel pillow – your neck will thank you for it. 


Exercise routines are often the first Christmas holiday casualty. Life gets busy, your yoga studio closes and suddenly you haven’t worked out for two weeks. 

Our bodies love movement and routine, and falling out of your regular exercise schedule will see you limping into 2023. To remain pain-free holiday this Christmas, plan to bring your exercise routine with you wherever you go.   

Here’s how: 

  • Ask the experts: Make an appointment with us at Physionorth. We’ll put together some easily adaptable travel exercises that you can do wherever you are this Christmas holidays. 
  • BYO equipment: If you hit the gym three times a week (good on you!) and you’re heading on a long car trip, back some light weights so you can continue with your strength and conditioning exercises on the road. 
  • Use what you’ve got: If you are travelling overseas, you aren’t going to want to waste any of those baggage kilos on weights – but there’s no better way to explore a new city than on foot so adapt your routine to incorporate some long walks in amongst your sightseeing. 

Take breaks…. From sitting

Travelling means long periods without moving and being stagnant will cause your muscles to tighten and ultimately leave you in pain. 

If you’re travelling by air and have a layover, walk from one end of the airport to the other (perhaps via the duty free!) to get some steps in before the next part of your journey. While you’re onboard, set a goal to get up every hour and walk the length of the plane. 

If you’re road tripping with another person, plan to share the driving so that you can give your neck and shoulders a rest. As part of your trip plan, make sure to schedule in stops along the way – both to take in the scenery and to take a break from sitting. 

Take breaks…. From drinking 

From minor falls to serious road traffic accidents, drinking related injuries spike over the Christmas holidays. Having a healthy Christmas doesn’t mean abstaining from a glass of champagne; a healthy Christmas is one that is all about balance. 

Planning a few alcohol-free days over your Christmas holiday will significantly lower your risk of injury and leave you feeling healthier, both physically and mentally. There’s a huge variety of non-alcoholic beers and wines available these days so you don’t need to feel like you’re missing out. 

Take breaks…. From lifting 

Whether you’re lifting an esky, a giftwrapped dolls’ house, or an overstuffed suitcase there’s plenty of opportunity to strain on our backs over the Christmas holidays. 

Be aware of what you are lifting and how often, and pay attention to any little niggles – if you ignore them they are likely to develop into bigger issues. If lifting causes you pain, be sure to make an appointment with us as soon as possible to fix it.

If lifting is an inevitable holiday activity for you, bend your knees as you do it, and try and share the load with family or friends. If you’re travelling by air, take advantage of airport trolleys and don’t pack too much to ensure that when you inevitably do have to lift suitcases you are comfortably able to do so. 

We hope you have a merry Christmas with your family and friends. If you do find yourself stiffer after your Christmas holiday, we’ll help you get back to feeling great in your body. Make an appointment  for the new year with the Physionorth team, or give a family member the gift of a pain-free holiday and new year. 


*All information is general in nature and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Physionorth can consult with you to confirm if this advice is right for you.

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