Marcus’s recent post on kyphosis alluded to the harsh reality that many of us are confined to a sitting position much of our time, and it may be doing more harm than good. Mark Sisson, author of the blog Mark’s Daily Apple, offers some scientific data to support why sitting for long periods of time is unhealthy (as if you didn’t know that already). As a follow-up to my posture post where I addressed correct posture in a standing position, I’d like to quickly cover how to sit in such a way that will minimize the damage of excessive sitting.

Esther Gokhale, coined the term Stretchsitting and explains the technique in her book 8 Steps to a Pain-Free Back. It goes something like this:

  1. Sit down placing your buttocks back into the chair
  2. Place your feet about hip-width apart and relax your legs
  3. Lengthen your spine–bend at the waist and lean slightly forward to lengthen your low back. This eliminates any sway, or lordosis, you may have.
  4. Further lengthen your spine–leave your buttocks anchored in the chair. With both hands, hold on to some part the chair (armrests, backrest, or seat) and push with your arms. Relax the muscles of your torso, allowing the rib cage to separate as much as possible from the pelvis.
  5. Attach your mid-back to the backrest or cushion–keeping your arms engaged to maintain the extra length in your spine. Think of pinning a point in your mid-back as high as possible on the backrest.
  6. Release the tension in your arms
  7. Straighten your upper back
  8. Perform a shoulder roll with each shoulder
  9. Lengthen the back of the neck

For more detail see the free preview of Gokhale’s book on Google Books.

Keep this in mind this week at work, school, or home, and start stretchsitting to keep your back, shoulders, and neck in alignment.

REST DAY 04.18.10

Morning Classes will now run M, T, Th, and Friday. AM class now run from 6:30-7:30 AM instead of 7-8 AM. Get your mornings started off right!

4 Responses to “Have a Seat, If You Must”

April 19, 2010 at 3:36 PM

Yeah for the AM class move, my CrossFit dreams may not yet have been crushed!

April 19, 2010 at 8:53 PM

yay, no more once a month wod, then?

April 19, 2010 at 10:13 PM

Magic 8 Ball says: Ask again later.

[...] of us who have desk jobs wouldn’t be embarrassed to do at work.  It’s as simple as sitting up tall in our chair, crossing one leg over so that the ankle is on the opposite knee, and leaning forward [...]