Thank you to Annabel Wllis MBE for another pit stop article full of tips for helping us to stay healthy.  This time it’s for our backs!

Approximately 30-60% of drivers report back pain caused or made worse by driving.  As busy ADI’s our bodies are exposed to numerous different forces including acceleration, harsh braking, deceleration and most notably vibration.  On each working day we need to react promptly and quickly with our hands and feet.  Whether conducting driving lessons or driving to our next one, we are always controlling the car pedals, so they are not used to stabailise and support the lower body as they normally would when sitting.

Exercises to Assist Lower Mechanical Back Pain
1. Side bends – This exercise works the obliques to help stabailise the core/trunk area.  Start with your feet hip width apart, hands on hips.  Keeping the back straight, bend slowly to the left and then slowly to the right.  Don’t tilt forward.  Repeat 10 times.

2. Cat/Cow pose – Brings flexibility to the spine, strengthens the back torso and neck and strengthens the abdominals and opens the chest.  Kneel on the floor, hands shoulder width apart and hands pointing forwards.  Arch your back (looking down), lower your stomach towards the floor and take a breadth.  Then hollow your back (looking up) and exhale.  Do this exercise slowly.  Repeat 10 times.

3. Forward Bend – creates length and space in the spine.  Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and your knees bent.  Contract your shoulder muscles and slowly roll down as far as you can (don’t overstretch).   Allow your arms to fall towards your feet then gently straighten up to your standing position.  Repeat 10 times.

4.  Knee-to-chest stretch can help elongate the lower back, relieving tension and pain.  Lie on your back on the floor. Bend the knees, keeping both feet flat on the floor.  Use both hands to pull one knee in toward the chest.  Hold the knee against the chest for 5 seconds, keeping the abdominals tight and pressing the spine into the floor.  Return to the start position.  Repeat with the opposite leg.  Repeat with each leg 2–3 times.

5. This lower back rotational stretch can help relieve tension in the lower back and trunk.  It also gently works the core muscles to improve stability.  Lie back on the floor with your knees bent and feet flat on the ground.  Keeping the shoulders firmly on the floor, gently roll both bent knees over to one side.  Hold the position for 5–10 seconds.  Return to the start position.  Gently roll the bent knees over to the opposite side, hold and then return to the start position.  Repeat 2–3 times on each side.

6. The pelvic tilt exercise can release tight back muscles and keep them flexible.  Lie back on the floor with your knees bent and feet flat, keeping the arms by the sides.  Gently arch the lower back and push the stomach out.  Hold for 5 seconds, and then relax.  Flatten your back and pull your bellybutton in toward the floor.  Hold for 5 seconds, and then relax.  Increase the number of repetitions daily, building up to 30.

(Please note: – all these exercises should be pain free and shouldn’t be carried out with people who have injuries to that specific area).  Hope some of this is of use.
Looking forward to our next topic abdominals and the ADI.


Woody’s wise words.  Thanks also to Woody Woodward for allowing me to pinch his wise words to share with you –

A little message about holding grudges

Here’s a short story I heard from someone some while ago

It’s probably more relevant now because people are frightened and scared one of the first things we do is to look to blame someone for our problems.

This story is about two monks who are heading back to their monastery, the path is flooded because of torrential monsoons and they have to take a more direct route.

The two monks belong to a monastery where it is forbidden to have contact with women.

They are walking along and come to fast filling stream, there is a women on the other side who is crying and pleading for help.

The eldest Monk stops much to the horror of his younger accomplice, brother you can not go near that women

But she needs our help

Brother you have made a sacred vow, you will disgrace the monastery.

The elder Monk stops, wades into the water and without a word walks up to the women picks her up ad carries her to safety and gently puts her down and then continues his journey with his young colleague.

The young Monk struggles to hold his frustration and after several hours he explodes and says how could you disobey our vows and carry that women.

The elder Monk turns smiles and say gently, my bother I put that women down hours ago but is you who is still carrying her.

The story shows how holding grudges holds us back and gives us a heavy burden to carry.

This gets heavier the more we continue to carry it. It’s affects your mental health and creates negative emotions which build and become your behaviour, your brain will begin to programme you to follow this behaviour.

Instead of this you can chose to let things go, do the best you can, find positives in everyday things.

Once you let go you will see things differently, keep holding and they will become

Try not to carry grudges especially at this time as during the quarantine this this will keep getting heavier and heavier in your mind.

Instead chose to let go and chose to look for the positives things in life no matter how bad things seem.

Stay safe be kind to each other



Thank you Graham Lucas of Smart Driving for sharing this document on the job retention scheme.  If you are your own company you may find something of interest here.


And finally thanks to member Jean O’Brien for letting us know that Yell have agreed to finish one part of her contract early saving her £38 per month (but they won’t allow her to miss a payment).


Whilst our newsflashes are normally a benefit of membership of the ADINJC, during this national emergency we want to share information as widely as possible, so please feel free to pass this on.  We are stronger together.


The NJC continues to be dedicated to help you in these challenging times and we hope you and your loved ones stay safe and healthy.  Please feel free to contact us for help and support.


ADINJC’s helpline is 0800 8202 444

The Secretary’s number is 07855 453414

You can find the latest NASP guidelines on Coronavirus here.

HMRC Helpline:  0800 0159 559
Citizens Advice Bureau –

You can sign up to receive Government updates on Coronavirus relating to driving tests here.

The ADINJC is a national association run by ADIs on a not-for-profit basis.  We work tirelessly to inform, represent and support our members, and to promote the interests of our profession.