Sitting is a Pain in the Butt

By: Kathleen Gramzay Thursday August 4, 2016 comments Tags: corporate wellness, counteract sitting, move

Have you heard the saying if you want to understand someone's experience "walk a mile in their shoes"? Instead of walking in someone else's shoes, I have been sitting in someone else's office chair.  All I can say is given the option, I'll take the shoes.

I'll admit I've been spoiled.  For the last 17 years as a self-developed, movement-based therapist and educator teaching Kinessage® to therapists, my days were all about movement. My desire to share the method with everyone else who lives in a body led me write Release Your Pain, Expand Your Life, develop the virtual Kinessage® Release Your Pain Self Care System for the public, and do the website to get it out.  

Here's the irony.  That all required the majority of the last 12 months spent with my butt in a chair.

What I already felt passionately about has been pointedly corroborated by my body:  The positions you regularly hold are cumulative, and movement throughout the day is critical.

Here are a few things to keep an eye out for that can cause pain that you might not be aware of, as well as some tips to build movement into your day.  

1.  What is your regular posture when you are mentally engrossed in what you're doing?  

Is your head lurched forward towards the screen or to the side trying to hold your phone? Is your jaw clenched, your mouse hand reaching away pulling on your neck?  Is one leg wrapped around the other like a pretzel? Is one foot crammed underneath the other?  If you have frequent pain in any specific area - head, neck, shoulder, arms, wrist, hand, back, hips, knees, ankles or feet look at how you sit at your desk or the position your body is in the majority of your day.  

Once you know what it is, put a sticky note right in front of you that reminds you to undo that, i.e., "uncross your legs", "pull your head back", "sit up straight", whatever you need until you break the habit.

2.  As for movement, the operative word is FREQUENT.

 If you get sucked into your screen and then next thing you know, it's time to go to lunch or home, that is NOT frequent. New recommendations are that you should move after every 20 minutes of sitting. If that's not feasible to you, set your phone alarm to 45 minutes.  Focus and concentrate for 45 minutes on the specific task at hand (which will increase your productivity during the time) then get up, stretch, and move.  

Walk or do other specific movements that help your body release the tension and reset itself.  You'll sit back down with a more energized body and a more focused and relaxed mind.  

Your butt will thank you for the break too.

To your greater health & well-being,

My mission with this blog is to provide information that supports holistic pain relief and self-care that encompasses all of who you are - body, mind, and Spirit.


About the Author: Kathleen Gramzay

Kathleen Gramzay, BCTMB is Body/Mind Performance Expert, 20-yr Board Certified Massage Therapist, and Developer of Kinessage® Self Care and Mindful Resilience.  Her mission is to empower people to release their stress, chronic tension & pain to live more joyful, productive and healthy lives.   If you would like to learn more about Kinessage® Self-Care or the Mindful Resilience programs, contact Kathleen