Is Sitting Up Straight Actually Bad for Your Back?

  • Thread starter ehrenfest
  • Start date
In summary, sitting up straight is not the best position for office workers, and there are many more comfortable positions.
  • #1
ehrenfest
2,020
1
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/6187080.stm

Sitting up straight is not the best position for office workers, a study has suggested.

Scottish and Canadian researchers used a new form of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to show it places an unnecessary strain on your back.

They told the Radiological Society of North America that the best position in which to sit at your desk is leaning back, at about 135 degrees.

Experts said sitting was known to contribute to lower back pain.

...

There was this one girl in my first grade class who would sit straight like a rod for hours as we sat on the ground around our teacher who was reading to us. The only reason she did this was that the teacher would periodically compliment here on her nice posture. I bet she has scoliosis or something now.
 
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  • #2
Sweet: I can quote this as an excuse when I tilt my chair back for my afternoon nap!
 
  • #3
Okay, so maybe that will help with some back problems. But, if you're sitting back 135 degrees while trying to work, won't you then have problems with straining your neck to look at what's on your desk? It might be more feasible when working on a computer to lean back while looking at a monitor positioned higher on the desk (and here they kept telling us the most ergonomic position was to have it lower on the desk and look down toward it :rolleyes:), but doesn't seem very feasible for reading and writing.

Here's my approach to ergonomics...if it hurts to sit that way, MOVE. :biggrin:
 
  • #4
I can see where it could replace backaches with neck aches. I tend to move around a lot in my chair, I think that's the best bet.
 
  • #5
Im pretty sure my body has always known this...

I just realized it says 135 degrees... That's a 45 degree tilt!
 
  • #6
moose said:
Im pretty sure my body has always known this...

I just realized it says 135 degrees... That's a 45 degree tilt!

That's why recliners are SOOOOOOO comfortable to sit for hours watching TV. :biggrin:

On the other hand, their choices were slouching, sitting up straight, or reclining. Hmm...what about the age-old typist's position where you lean forward just slightly, putting more of your weight over your thighs rather than the ischium? If you sit up very straight, but against a chair back, you shift your weight more to your lower back, gluteal region, and most of your weight is pressing on the ischium (part of the hip bone). If you lean forward just slightly, you're still technically sitting up straight, but leaving a bit more curvature in your spine and shifting the pressure from your gluteal region to your thighs. (The biggest hindrance I have for sitting in this more comfortable position is that I'm short and if I sit all the way back in a chair, my feet don't even reach the floor to get into this position. Instead, I sit more toward the front of the chair.
 
  • #7
hypatia said:
I tend to move around a lot in my chair, I think that's the best bet.
This is what I do too.
Lean forward, lean back and slouch, kick off my shoes and sit lotus-style, put my feet on the desk and my kb in my lap (that last one doesn't last long - usually my neck hurts, or I hear my boss coming).
 

Related to Is Sitting Up Straight Actually Bad for Your Back?

1. Is sitting up straight really not good for you?

Contrary to popular belief, sitting up straight for prolonged periods of time can actually be harmful to your health. It can lead to muscle strain, decreased blood circulation, and increased risk of developing back pain.

2. What is the correct posture for sitting?

The correct posture for sitting is to have your feet flat on the ground, your back against the chair, and your shoulders relaxed. Your hips should be slightly higher than your knees, and your spine should maintain its natural curve.

3. Why is sitting up straight often recommended?

Sitting up straight is often recommended because it is perceived as a sign of good posture and proper etiquette. However, this belief is not supported by scientific evidence and can actually do more harm than good.

4. How can I improve my posture while sitting?

To improve your posture while sitting, it is important to take frequent breaks to stand up and stretch. You can also invest in an ergonomic chair or use a lumbar support to maintain the natural curve of your spine.

5. Are there any health benefits to sitting up straight?

No, there are no proven health benefits to sitting up straight. In fact, it can lead to discomfort and pain in your back, neck, and shoulders if done for extended periods of time. It is important to find a comfortable and relaxed sitting position instead of trying to constantly maintain a straight posture.

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