Are You Sitting Like A Cashew?

Weekly Wellness Tip

Are You Sitting Like A Cashew?

Dr. Nomi Kahn, an orthopedic surgeon says we “have lost the art of sitting.” You may not realize you’re doing it. But it’s super easy to see in other people.

Here’s how: Take a look at people who are sitting down – not face-on, but rather from the side, so you can see the shape of their spine. There’s a high probability their back is curving like the letter C – or some version of C. Or it might make you think of a cashew nut, sitting in the chair. Their shoulders cure over and their butts curve under. This posture is hurting your back.

Back problems crop up because sitting like a C – or a cashew nut – can damage the little shock absorbers in the spine, called the intervertebral discs. Sitting in C shape, over time, can cause disk degeneration.

According to Jenn Sherer, of the Spinefulness center in Palo Alto, the most important thing to change to improve your sitting posture and reduce back pain is your pelvis position.

To figure how to shift your pelvis into a healthier position, Sherer says to imagine for a minute you have a tail. If we were designed like dogs, the tail would be right at the base of your spine. To straighten out the C shape, we need to position the pelvis in a way this tail would wag. To do that you need to bend over properly when you go to sit down. If you bend at the hips (create a crease between your pelvis and legs), you’re more likely to sit correctly with your tail untucked.

Relax the muscles in your muscles in you back and chest to help the rest of your vertebrae stack up in a straight line. You should feel your quadriceps muscles relax and your hamstring muscles stretch.


Bringing mindfulness back to the way we are sitting will help to decrease back problems.


Recipe of the Week:

This recipe for Sesame Chicken Chopped Salad is a healthy version of the traditional recipe–no sugary dressing and wonton strips mixed in. It’s great for a gathering or an easy way to prep a week’s worth of lunches. You can use chicken breast, but the chicken thighs tend to absorb more flavor and stay really juicy.

Quote of the Week:

“Sitting is a place where you can find heaven in your joints and in your back. It’s not sitting that’s causing the pain, it’s how you’re sitting.”

Jenn Sherer

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