Tattoos have become the go-to form of body art for everyone across the world with more than 45 million people in the United States sporting tattoos. With the increasing popularity of tattoos, tattoo artists have become acutely aware of the burden that their profession can cause on their bodies. Working in an awkward hunched position most of the day can take its toll on the tattoo artist’s back and neck, leading to chronic pain. In this article, we’ll explore how tattoo artists can prevent and alleviate back pain so they can continue working and showing their artistry.

Why is back pain so common for tattoo artists?

Tattoo artists sit in an awkward position for huge chunks of their day, bent slightly over their client’s skin. This awkward body positioning puts a huge strain on the back, neck and spine leading to chronic pain. If left unchecked, this strain can end up causing serious body damage.

Poor Posture

Tattooing requires a good posture to keep the artist’s arm in a steady form and prevent fatigue from setting in. Slouching or leaning forward while tattooing can cause back discomfort. To avoid this, maintain an upright posture and adjust your seat so that your back is well aligned with the chair.

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Static Pressure

Tattoo artists often maintain the same pose for hours on end, putting pressure on their spines and muscles. To prevent chronic pain, slightly shift posture a few times every hour and take frequent breaks, even for a few minutes. Additionally, use ergonomic tools such as armrests, back supports and footstools to improve posture and reduce exertion.

How can tattoo artists reduce back pain?

Tattoo artists understand the immediate consequences of prolonged sitting. There are several strategies they can take to prevent and alleviate back pain.


Regular exercise is vital in order to maintain strength and relieve strain on the back muscles. Chose exercises specifically designed to target back pain and consider taking a break between tattoos to get up and move.

Proper Seating

Ensure that you’re seating in a comfortable and ergonomic position during tattooing. If possible, invest in a specialized tattoo chair that provides enough back, shoulder and arm support and adjustability options.

Improve Your Posture

One of the best preventive measures for back pain is to consciously maintain a good posture. Avoid slouching or hunching your shoulders and focus on keeping your spine erect throughout your work session.

People Also Ask

What techniques can tattoo artists use to protect their backs?

Tattoo artists need to pay close attention to their posture and take regular breaks to get up and move around. Additionally, they should use ergonomic tools such as armrests, back supports and foot stools to reduce exertion on the body.

What is the best posture for a tattoo artist?

The best posture for a tattoo artist is an upright seating position with their back well aligned with the chair. Ensure that you’re seating comfortably and that your wrists and arms are adequately supported.

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Can tattooing cause back problems?

Working in an awkward hunched position for long hours without taking breaks can cause muscle fatigue, strain on the spine and chronic back pain. To avoid this, maintain an upright posture and take frequent breaks to move around.

How often should a tattoo artist take a break?

Tattoo artists should take a break at least a few times every hour, even for a few minutes. Additionally, they should incoporate exercises in their routine to maintain body strength and monitor their posture throughout the work session.

Final Words

Tattoo artists need to take good care of their backs in order to prevent and alleviate chronic pain. Although it can take some time to build up the right habits, there are several exercises and seating options they can use to stay comfortable while they work. Keeping a good posture and taking regular breaks can help manage pain, helping the artist continue shining in the craft they love most.