Resilient Body Series – Part 2
For a healthy body that moves with ease, a variety of movement and activity is essential. And variety during resting and static postures is equally important. Move your body in all planes of motion throughout the day – front to back, side to side and rotation. Maintaining strength and flexibility through full ranges of motion in the entire body will help to keep you resilient.
I know many of you spend most of the day at a desk or on the computer. I hope that you are taking movement breaks to get up and walk and stretch. I also want to encourage you to change your position while you’re working. Standing desks are a great option, but I’m talking about more than that. The body adapts to what we spend the most time doing – so make sure that you are not staying in that hunched forward posture while sitting in a chair at your desk.
These next photos are just some options of different postures that I use while spending time on the computer. I realize that everyone may not have much flexibility (pun intended) in an office setting, but get creative with what you can do. Or get in touch with me for some suggestions.
Also try kneeling, toe sitting or side sitting for even more variety.
You’ll notice in these photos that my head is looking down at the screen of my laptop because I cannot detach my keyboard to have the screen at an ideal eye level. If you have the same situation, it is really important to take more frequent breaks to lift your chin, rotate your head side to side, bend your neck side to side – you just want to prevent your neck from being in the same awkward position for too long.
Other tips for movement while at work:
- Stand during phone calls
- Walking meetings when feasible
- Chair stretches
- Foot training
Speaking of foot training, this photo shows good neutral ankle alignment by using a half foam roll under the balls of my feet.
When most of us sit in a chair with our feet flat on the floor, even when barefoot (let alone with heeled shoes on) our feet remain slightly plantar flexed (toes pointed). This can lead to calf tightness, Achilles tendon stress, plantar fasciitis and back pain.
Yep, back pain …
Decreased mobility in the foot and ankle changes our posture, changes our gait mechanics and can lead to tension elsewhere in the body resulting in pain. So if possible, kick off those shoes and prop up your toes for improved ankle mobility while sitting at your desk. You can also sit at the edge of your chair with your feet flat on the floor and slightly behind your knees – keep changing your position throughout the day to prevent adaptation to poor postural stresses.
There is more to come on training your feet to retune and realign your body for healthy movement – look for Part 3 of the Resilient Body Series coming soon.
Find your path to better posture and a more resilient body!
Thanks for giving us all these options Jennifer. I am actually using the long sitting posture now. I appreciate you offering us a way to move while we are “sitting still”. So many of us are sitting in front of computers all the time,I am going to pass this along!
You’re welcome Marlene – so good to hear from you! I love that you’re using long sitting; keep those hamstrings happy! Thank you for sharing and I hope to see you soon.