So, We know that sitting is bad in many ways, with muscle weakening and what-not. But what is it? The angle of the legs? The lack of work your back does with support? Something else? A combination?
What I am getting at, what different types of sitting are good versus bad? For example, sitting on the ground with no support, kneeling, sitting on the ground leaning against something, sitting on something chair height with no back support, sitting in a regular chair with support, etc. What about sitting on a couch with your knees bent and feet on the floor, but with your upper body sprawled out and laying down? When do you cross the line into, potentially, damaging your body?
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that's a good question that I've been wondering myself. it's very clear to me that when I've been sitting for a long time my legs get stiff and sore but I'm not always sure why. I think part of it is bad blood circulation in the legs and I think another part of it is that the angles that we sit at--no matter what angle--over time will shorten certain muscles and make them tight.
for example when sitting traditionally in an office chair, your hip flexors will become shortened over time because they are in a constantly shortened and contracted state so your body will adapt to that. then your whole body will be affected: tight hip flexors lead to an anterior pelvic tilt which leads to misalignment in the spinal chord which leads to this and then that and it goes on and on.
so basically I would say that no sitting is good because it's an unnatural state for the body to be in, but maybe by switching positions (unless switching into some sort of acrobatic position that can't possibly be beneficial) you could slightly mitigate the effects of staying in one position for too long.
this is a purely observational answer, but that's my experience with sitting. I have a host of muscular imbalances, mostly in my legs, that are almost definitely due to sitting too much.
Last edited by Ritualist; 06-17-2014 at 09:34 AM.
the chair props us, and its' that which leads to the trouble.
when we are on the floor, we move around more (switching positions), and this keeps us from getting all cramped up in a supported position (usually wrong) and causing problems.
I have back problems... so I am pretty good at figuring out "bad sitting." Pretty much any and all chairs make my back hurt. Although surprisingly, an exception to this is recliners. I think it's the angle, not straight up and down, not flat, but putting my body in a zig zag shape a la an adjustable bed frame (I highly recommend these, by the way).
Squatting, standing and kneeling do not hurt my back. I will usually do these, use a kneeling chair or use a yoga ball. I *hate* regular chairs.
Stumbled into Primal due to food allergies, and subsequent elimination of non-primal foods.
Start Gluten-Free/Soy-Free: December 2012; start weight 158lbs, Ladies size 6
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I think it's the immobility - the fewer muscles you're using, the worse off you are. So change positions often and move a bit at your standing workstation.
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IMHO it is mostly the inactivity. Those big leg and butt muscles are not pumping blood, not being metabolically active. They shrink in size.
Compare the butt of a 45 year old american office worker with a 45 year old african bushman. The american trades his butt for a gut and the african maintains his physique
The problem with sitting is just that we do it for so long. Get up and move relatively frequently. Like once every fifteen minutes.