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The Foundation of Sitting and Standing

Doctor's Blog

The Foundation of Sitting and Standing

People sitting with good posture

We may change partners, homes, vehicles, computers, and mobile phones. However, we really truly have only one place to live while we are here: our body. The shape, position, tension, and tone of our spine and nervous system greatly impacts our experience of life and our body. How we hold ourselves, both sitting and standing, is impacted by a wide variety of factors, and can influence vast portions of our lives.


In our culture, sitting is killing us. On average, people spend most of their day sitting, sometimes nine to twelve hours each day. This includes time at work as well as time at the dinner table, on the couch, driving, etc. Any sitting time over eight hours is considered excessive, and excessive sitting is related to changes not only in our spine and how we feel, but also in our metabolism and mental state.

Here are a few important tips to help with your sitting posture so you do not contribute further to neural spinal dysfunction, also known as subluxation.

  • Get Up Frequently
    Set timers on your computer to get up and walk around at least every hour.
  • Keep a 90 Degree Angle
    When you're sitting, make sure that your legs are at 90 degrees. If you need to, add a footstool to get the correct angle.
  • Add Cushions
    Put proper cushioning either behind your back or under your pelvis to support a lower back curve.
  • Avoid Eye Strain
    Make sure that you are not straining your eyes to see your monitor because that will cause you to pull your head forward, which contributes to anterior head syndrome. If you can't see the screen without straining, you may need to change the position of your monitor, the height of your desk, the height of your monitor, or get glasses. You can also increase the font size or the level of zoom on the document you're working on to be easier on your eyes.
  • Try a Standing Desk
    A standing desk can also be incredibly helpful to keep you on your feet for more of your day.

It's important to realize that if you already have changes to your NeuroStructural structure, or NeuroStructural behavioral patterns that have created shifts in your perception of your body and your experience of life, these tips will just be temporary band aids. You will also need to address the underlying challenges that likely have developed over years.


Standing is not as difficult on a person's body as sitting; however, being mindful of your standing posture is important. Standing with your head forward or cast down can pull and stretch nerves and alter body position. Standing with your pelvis swayed forward, as if you're tucking your tail between your legs, causes similar tension and stretching on the nerves and connective tissue.

Take a moment and stand in your natural posture in front of a mirror. Face yourself first and then stand sideways to the mirror to see your posture while you're sideways to the mirror.

Are your shoulders slumped?

Is your head tilted to one side?

Is your torso twisted?

Is your pelvis to one side or tucked forward?

Are your ears, shoulders, hips, and knees lined up?

One of the mistakes people often make is to try to fix these postural distortions consciously using their educated brain to control how they're holding themselves. This can cause more damage because if a person's natural posture is to slump or to shift, that means there is something underlying in the nervous system that has changed the behavior pattern of the body. Working against the body can drive challenges deeper.

Posture is the window to your nervous system. Changes in your posture are not about being lazy or having to consciously hold your body in a certain way; changes in your posture are really about what has happened to your nervous system. Your biology holds your biography. What has happened to you physically, chemically, and emotionally in your life is reflected in the armor that you wear as your posture.

Very commonly, a variety of defensive postures come from trauma. Those defensive postures broadcast into the world the past trauma, hurt, or challenges, as well as attract the same experience repeatedly. The way a person holds their body is a tuning fork for their experience of their life. If you want to change your life, change your spine.

To determine the health of your underlying NeuroStructural integrity, contact our office for a free consultation. We will discuss your health concerns and health goals, and determine if your NeuroStructural structure and behavior are impacting how you perceive your body as well as your health.

By networkwellnesscentersApril 22, 2016

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