Sitting is already the worst position for your spine- imagine if we lived in a world that required us to sit for most of our waking days? This is already a reality for a large part of the populace and the demographic is growing. What’s more is that, regardless of whether our jobs require it or not, we are actively seeking out entertainment options that place us in front of screens and often we are slumped on the couch, or laying with our necks tilted upward in bed just to watch and be, “as comfortable as possible.” This is setting a dangerous precedent, as persistently poor posture is one of the quickest ways to create problems related to spinal compression and muscular degeneration. To illustrate this point, let us use the hamstrings:
As you sit working away at the desk, or watching your favorite show, the hamstrings are in a perpetual state of contraction. If they are not stretched and lengthened regularly, they contract and create a pull on the pelvis. This, in turn, leads to destabilization of the lower back and can create misalignment. Furthermore, many people who are unaware of posture sit with a posterior-tilted pelvis, which can be torture for the sacrum and lumbar regions of the spine.
Hamstring tightness is an individual experience, as some people are not affected by it while others find that it causes pain and limits movement. It is particularly problematic for athletes and gym goers, but this is OK because exercise is precisely the way to solve the problem. With targeted stretched and strengthening, we can release the region from tension and prevent the problem from recurring. Yes, it takes dedication, but the reward is worth it: you will feel freer. Let’s get those muscles lengthened and stretched and address any spinal misalignment that may have been caused by chronically tight hamstrings; give our office in Bakersfield a call to schedule an appointment today.
Dr. Jeff Haynes, D.C.