Does this sound familiar: Someone tells you that “sitting is the worst thing for your body!” You then smile and nod as you make a conscious effort to not sit as much until eventually you slip back into the same routine.
On the one hand, yes, it’s true! Sitting is not the best for your body. Your spine has 3 big curves, making it an S-shaped structure. Changes in the normal curvature of your spine, like sitting, will lead to tight muscles and chronic pain.
But, let’s be honest, you can’t avoid siting forever! Since we’re not able to give up sitting then perhaps instead we should focus on perfecting our posture in order to try to avoid those long lasting effects on your muscles and joints that sitting can have on your body.
For most of us, the place we sit the most is at work. So, without further ado, here are my top 4 tips for keeping your work stations ergonomic!
- Take breaks throughout the day + stretch! The ligaments in your spine are stretched after a few minutes of sitting incorrectly, with effects lasting for up to 30 minutes! Imagine what happens to your body when you are sitting incorrectly for 40+ hours a week!
- Sit all the way at the back of your chair! This will force you to sit upright minimizing the curve in your lower back. An added bonus would be to have a foot rest under your chair so you sit at a 90 degree angle!
- Don’t cross your legs! Crossing your legs promotes slouching and pushes your neck forward leading to forward head carriage.
- Getting up every hour to stretch will benefit your muscles and your body! Movement is really critical! It provides nourishment to the spine, improves circulation, and keeps joints healthy.
If you start to make these small changes daily, you will start to notice a difference in your posture in no time!
Dr. Ritika Merai is a Doctor of Chiropractic. She holds a doctorate degree in Chiropractic and a Masters in Applied Clinical Nutrition. She attended Caldwell University and New York Chiropractic College. Dr. Merai has taken many post- graduate courses in Rehabilitation and Functional Assessment of the Spine and Extremities. She utilizes soft tissue therapy and kinesiology taping. Dr. Merai has been trained in The Webster Protocol and often combines Chiropractic and Obstetric care. She currently has her own private practice in White Plains, NY.