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Your sitting position and the relative pressure it places on tissues in your lower spine

I find myself explaining the effects of sitting position and the relative pressure it places on tissues in your lower back on a daily basis.

Although below is an ad for a chair company, it represents the research evidence pictorially better than anything else I have been able to find. (Disclaimer: I am not selling these chairs).

As you can see in the picture, slouching while sitting at your desk can put a huge amount of pressure on your discs between your vertebrae. Most likely you are at your desk daily, which means your spine is not getting the regular breaks it needs to clear the pressure that you put on it.

Your body needs a regular routine of clearing the pressure from a days work. Please note it is not a one off fix, clearing this pressure from a days work is not as simple as a massage on Friday to fix the week full of pressure.

There are some great ways to help relieve the pressure that we put on our bodies in our daily working life this could be through:

  • Exercise

  • Yoga

  • Pilates

  • Stretching

  • Walking

  • Massage or

  • Osteopathy

I like to think of clearing the day’s accumulated physical stress with nightly stretching routines. This way, Monday’s pressure is cleared out of the body on Monday night and does not accumulate on top of Tuesday’s pressure and so on throughout the weeks, months, and years.

Lets just do some quick math to further demonstrate these percentages roughly. If you weigh 70kg and we hypothesize that your legs are 40% of your body weight, this means that your upper body weighs 42kg. 42kg stacked on top of the lower back vertebrae then multiplied by the % you add on by sitting incorrectly as demonstrated in the picture. So in this example your spine is designed and capable of dealing with 42kg of pressure. Hunched over sitting means you will have 79.8kg hinging off your spine. Wow!

Please be aware that your sitting position is derived from a multitude of factors. Some of these to give you some quick ideas can include:

  • Ergonomic set up of your work station

  • Eye sight,

  • Habits (bad ones)

  • Lighting

  • Sound

  • Mood

  • Gut health

  • Breathing patterns

  • General postural tone and

  • Body awareness to name just a few

Have a chat to your practitioner at Osteopath Central next time you’re in if you’d like more information on this topic and how to correct this awful un-due pressure on your lower back.

Call 0425 876 929 to make an appointment or BOOK ONLINE HERE!

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