Do you spend a lot of your day sitting?
If you are like a lot of people in Ireland today, you will spend quite a few hours of your day sitting down.
This may involve sitting down at work, sitting down at your laptop or sitting down to watch T.V. Our modern day world consists of a lot of sitting and it is something that cannot be avoided.
For some people this is fine, but for others, it can mean that they can feel stiff, achy and lethargic.
If you are one of these people, then you will really benefit from these tips that I’m going to share with below.
Sitting cannot be avoided.
We hear and read so much negative talk these days about sitting and how too much sitting can lead to problems such as obesity, painful joints and muscles. While is it true that too much sitting and inactivity is not a good thing, for many people, it can not be completely avoided.
So lets take a look at some good practices that you can use for the times of the day when you do have to sit.
Good Sitting Practices
1 – Relax your posture
There is a big belief out there that you need to sit up straight and have a good posture when you sit. But what is a good posture?
Is it one where you are sitting very tall and straight, with your belly tucked and your tummy muscles engaged and working very hard for a long time?
Is it one where you are using the chair for support and you muscles are completely relaxed and free of tension?
I think the second answer should make more sense to everyone.
My tip to help you sit with a relaxed posture
- When sitting, bring your bum to the back of the chair so your lower back and mid back is supported against the chair.
- This should mean that you upper back is not resting against the chair.
- Ensure your shoulders are relaxed – a little bit slouched is fine
- This will mean that your lower back muscles and your core muscles are completely relaxed and you should be able to sit like this without and tension in your body.
2 – Bring your chair closer to the desk
If you have to sit at a desk and work on a computer, this should be the first thing you do.
Sit into the chair and move your chair in so you are sitting relatively close to the desk.
This may seem like common sense to some but you’d be surprised by the amount of people who sit away from the desk and then have to bend forward to get close to the desk, like in this picture below.
3 – Change your position when possible.
While there is not one ideal posture to sit in, we do not that if you stay in the same position for too long, you will be stiff when you go move.
So, whenever it is possible, get up and walk around, stretch, move, or do something to give your body a break from that position.
When it is not possible to get up, try moving your legs, arms, neck or back. Even something small to break up the position to help reduce the chances of getting sore and stiff.
If your job involves been in a seated position for a lot of the day then it is important to ensure that you are getting in some form of exercise or varied movement during the day.
That can be as simple as 20 minutes of light exercise or stretching in the morning or going for a walk in the evening.
Schedule it into your day so that you make it happen, otherwise it is very easy to get caught up in something else and exercise doesn’t happen.
Going for a massage or some physio will also be really beneficial if you joints or muscles are feeling very stiff and achy.