Ha! How’s that for a typical, scare-you-into-reading-more headline? We sure see a lot of those nowadays don’t we? The truth is: if sitting too much doesn’t directly put you in an early grave, then it will only crush your quality of life with the musculo-skeletal dysfunction that it breeds. This is an Ohh-sooo complex and interesting topic which will be covered in further detail through future posts.
A few BIG reasons why sitting is a drain on your soul:
Your butt. Is not. Designed. FOR SITTING ON!
Instead, its home to some of the largest, most powerful muscles in your body! Designed to Lift – JUMP – run – stand – cycle – ski – skate – SPRINT – step – stand – and LOOK BEAUTIFUL! When these muscles get sat on, they become inhibited*, starved of fresh blood, and stuffed up with all the bad stuff (lymph and deoxygenated blood)
Your PELVIS is your core.
Movement is required for HEALTH.
..but there was a problem…
- Better strength and function from my glutes and hamstrings
- More awareness of my body overall
- Increased calorie consumption (for fat loss or weight loss goals)
- Better foot and lower leg mechanics (with proper standing position)
- Increased range of motion in hip flexors (Super-crucial for any load bearing activity, especially running, double-especially running marathons)
- Better neck and head position (less discomfort, jaw-clenching, headaches)
- Better breathing mechanics (more diaphragm, less chest-breathing)
- Better shoulder position (scapulae lower and more retracted)
- Less LOW BACK PAIN! (increased proprioception* and better activation of lumbar spine stabilizers, as well as less tightness in the ilipsoas* pulling on your L-spine)
- Better pelvic-floor function and decreased pressure on sex organs, erectile tissue in men, and less urinary or end-digestive issues.
- Decreased level of perceived stress.
Of course, there is more to this concept than I can possibly go over in one blog post. The specifics of proper postural alignment will dictate the sustainability of this new work position, and those same specifics are best taught individually by a coach such as myself, after proper assessment and evaluation. That being said, here are some general guidlines to help you stand up-RIGHT!
- Big toes touch together, heels 1-3″ apart
- Weight distributed evenly across forefoots and heels – both front-to-back and side-side.
- Knees not locked, knee-caps point straight ahead
- Squeeze glutes only enough to keep hips forward-neutral. Don’t rotate your thigh-bones externally too much.
- Belly-button draws in slightly toward spine, but no need to make it a flex-fest.
- Shoulder-blades pull back and down (likely will require some stretching of shoulders, chest and neck if this will remain sustainable.)
- Chin pulls in toward the neck, head retracts slightly
- Tongue rests on the roof of your mouth, and jaw remains relaxed with 2-3mm of space between top teeth, and bottom teeth.
- Head remains fairly level, or tilted forward slightly.
So, that is a lot to take in! It’s also a lot more challenging than it sounds. This will take some serious practice, but it’s well-worth it. Work on one thing at a time, and use this technique as a self-assessment to see what areas of your body are struggling against gravity.
Take control of your posture, and throw your chair out the window!
Thanks, and let me know how it works!