When Is Sitting Okay?
We have been hearing so much lately about how awful sitting is for us. The phrase is, “Sitting is the new smoking.” Well, sitting in and of itself is not bad. It is how and why we sit that is important.
Many of us spend most of our time sitting when we are not sleeping. Most of us sit too much, but sometimes there is no choice. Maybe your foot is injured or your work requires it. Maybe your balance is compromised or your body is low on energy. You may not have a choice about whether to sit or not, but you do have a choice as to how you sit.
Sitting is recommended when meditating. There is a specific posture suggested when meditating, and it is an excellent way to sit most of the time. Often when people meditate in a formal way, they sit on the floor, but that is not necessary. Sitting in an alert way in a chair is just fine.
Let’s talk about the ideal chair. It should be a chair that allows you to have both feet on the floor with your knees level with your hips or at 90 degrees when bent. Shorter people may need to have a stool and taller people may need to sit on something to make them higher. I know people who carry a folding stool in their bag when they know they will be sitting for long periods. It is kind of a hassle to carry a cushion if you are tall but it might make the difference in how you feel in the long run. A chair that is very soft can encourage poor posture, so avoid them when you can. It is tempting to cross our legs or lean to one side more than the other. It is important to keep your body symmetrical and balanced as much as you can. Sit up with your back straight. It doesn’t need to be rigid, just with your back muscles comfortably engaged with your shoulders back and relaxed down. Often our head moves forward especially if we are straining to see something or concentrating hard on what is being said. Keep your head up when you can. It isn’t necessary to stay in this position only when you need to sit for long periods. This is when fidgeting is excellent as long as you are not driving others crazy. Change your position every few minutes -- keeping in mind not to favor one side over the other. Stretch and move around as much as you can. Keep your chest wide so you have plenty of room for your lungs.
The sitting method described above is the foundation posture when doing Chair Yoga. Sometimes we just need support when doing any kind of exercise. It is far better to sit when exercising than not to exercise at all. Sitting while exercising can be just as effective as standing. Doing yoga in a chair is a great way to let your body know you care.
The featured program for November is Chair Yoga. You can always find the featured workout on the main page of BlindAlive.com or in the app. This one is good to use when you need some extra support. It is also a good place for a beginner or someone recovering. Chair Yoga is gentle and effective.
The price is usually $19.99, but this month it is featured at $10.99.
Sometimes it is perfectly okay to sit.
Good health to you,