Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Sitting Upright is too Stressful for the Human Spine? Yes, but the Problem is Solved Already!

More discussion about the problems of sitting up straight ...

"The research project that was presented at the RSNA Meeting in Chicago (U.S.) last week by Dr. W. A. Bashir et al. got enormous press coverage and spread like wildfire over the worldwide web. The study confirmed with the help of a MRI technique that sitting in a slouched forward position or just upright in a 90degrees position was very unfavourable for the position of the nucleus and the intervertebral disk height.

SANTPOORT, The Netherlands, December 6 /PRNewswire/ -- The research project that was presented at the RSNA Meeting in Chicago (U.S.) last week by Dr. W. A. Bashir et al. got enormous press coverage and spread like wildfire over the worldwide web. The study confirmed with the help of a MRI technique that sitting in a slouched forward position or just upright in a 90degrees position was very unfavourable for the position of the nucleus and the intervertebral disk height.

By comparing a supine position with the position of a Formula 1 race car driver in his seat and then show how favourable this position is for the lumbar spine you can really make your point. Of course, leaning back in your chair with full support of backbones and shoulders is more relaxing then any more erect sitting posture.

The problem is that most people can not lean back; they just have to do their job at their desk, working table or machines while sitting upright or even bending forward a bit. So working conditions often dictate postural adaptations.

Recommendations on maximal extents of movement are found in the ISO 11226 standard, the evaluation of static working postures, and many consequences of that standard have been described in books and articles on ergonomics. So far there was nothing new in the presentation.

The great value of this research is that according to co-presenter Dr. F. Smith, the study confirms a hypothesis, dating back to 1953, that there is a relationship between lordosis and the trunk-thigh angle. The hips should be above the knees! This means that a well balanced body should be seated with sloping down thighs. That is impossible on a chair with a horizontal seat, or one with a backward or forward tilted inclination as this inclination is scientifically limited to 6-8degrees."    (Continued via PR Newswire)    [Ergonomics Resources]

Sitting Posture - Ergonomics

Sitting Posture

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1 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is a bit like witnessing the birth of one of those short-lived stars in space; it doesn't often happen and when it does, it fades quickly but the aftermath stays a long time. A recent press release, by the misuse of one word, "recline", has given birth to a myth that slouching is good for you.

It was at a recent giant conference of Radiologists in America; a presentation by an international group of doctors including Professor Frank Smith of Aberdeen University had shown results of research into the biomechanics of the spine by using MRI scans on the body in different positions.

The person writing the press release inserted the word "recline" into a phrase which included "135 degrees". And this was included in many reports including the Guardian and the BBC.
But don't rush to tip your office backwards; you will end up with a sore neck or pain in the shoulder area. What the research actually said was that there is less strain on the spine when the angle between thigh and spine is 135 degrees. The photograph of a subject undergoing the scan shows her vertical, sitting on a saddle seat.

11:20 AM  

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