Employees who drive for more than four hours a day or 25,000 miles a year are six times more likely to take sick leave for back injury than those who drive less.
Now, though, help could be on the way thanks to the work of researchers at Loughborough University.
The researchers plan to publish guidelines for drivers by the end of this year to try to reduce Britain's annual £200 million bill for treating musculoskeletal disorders.
The document is likely to focus on finding the correct seating position and taking regular breaks and exercise to help drivers minimise the impact of intensive driving.
Motorists put particular strain on their bodies when they slouch behind the wheel, stretch to reach pedals or pull themselves out of the seat.
Drivers who travel for more than 20 hours a week are at particular risk. Among men, driving is the second-highest cause of back pain, after DIY home improvements.
'Driving long distances is one of the worst things you can do to your body,' said Brian McIlwraith, an osteopath specialising in car ergonomics. 'The tendency is to slump, putting pressure on your hips, lower back and invertebral discs.'
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