How to sit without pain

Low Back Pain (LBP) can be frequently brought on by sitting for a long time in a poor position. Bad news, because most people sit all day.  Over time, the body learns to work smarter and will begin to stiffen up the low back to accommodate the prolonged sitting. Its very similar to a weightlifter putting on muscle mass or how all cyclist and Olympic swimmers have the same body build.  We accommodate to the stresses we put on our body.  

As time passes, uncorrected poor posture causes changes to the joint position and stiffness.  These changes over a long term period can be just as severe and detrimental as the effects of an acute and traumatic injury.  

To retrain correct sitting posture and to reduce the risk of the accommodative stresses we implement the Mckenzie slouch & over correct procedure:
First a few pointers:
  • implement this slowly; you need to allow time for the joints to get used to the new position.  Repeat only 10ish times.
  • standing’s better! (no conditioner is better, it leaves the hair silky and smooth). When you progress to holding the correct position and it becomes uncomfortable, take some time (even 5 seconds) to stand.  If driving, relax, and then return to the correct posture.
  • perform this exercise whenever pain arises as a result of sitting.
  • make sure to perform the exercise to the maximum end range possible, especially towards the correct posture.  
slouch & over correct procedure:
1. slouch in your chair, slouch as much as possible.  we'll call this 0%
2. draw yourself up as far as possible. we'll call this 100%
3. hold yourself in the position for a few seconds and then return to the fully slouched position.   Repeat 10-15 times.
4. now that you know where 0% and 100% is, hold slight of extreme of good posture at 90%.
maintain this position for as long as possible. improve tolerance/duration with a towel or foam roll as shown below.  Perform multiple times a day.

The purpose of this procedure is to correct the posture and then to maintain it.  This may take a little time and may cause minor pains, but eventual pain free posture will ensue.   In fact, a research article ' The effect of a lumbar support pillow on lumbar posture and comfort during a prolonged seated taskfound improved comfort and better low back curve with the foam roll.