Shifnal Chiropractic Clinic

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Sitting down and standing up


One of the main problems people who have a problem in the back say, is “It’s fine when I’m sitting down or standing’s getting from one to the other that’s the problem!”  The simple reason for this is the way most people get up or down.  Think about it – you’re nice and relaxed on the sofa, leaning back against it watching the TV.  You want another cup of tea, so you get up.  In the process, most people lean a long way forward, and often push themselves up off their legs or the sofa arm to help themselves.  But this means you have gone from bending a long way one way (leaning back on the sofa) to the other extreme (bending right the way forwards), all using muscles that haven’t been used for a short while and joints which have “set” in one position!  Of course you’re back is going to protest!

The same applies when sitting down again – generally, everyone stands with too much of a curve in their lower back.  They then lean forward as they are sitting down, throwing everything once more from one extreme to the other.  Your poor spine is starting to wonder if the world has ended!  Of course, the only way it can tell you it’s not liking it, is to give you a nice dose of pain.

So, it’s time we all learned to sit down properly.  Once you’ve mastered going down, coming back up again is just the reverse.

Here’s my simple step-by-step guide to standing up and sitting down.  To start with, you will have to exaggerate the movements – and you’ll probably feel like a complete numpty!  But don’t worry – once you get the hang of it, you can refine it, and you actually end up looking very dignified and refined instead.  What’s more, you won’t have to clutch your lower back and creak and groan for a while every time you want to move!

So here goes!

  • Position yourself squarely in front of your chair, with the back of your legs touching the edge of the seat.

  • Bend forwards from your hips, making sure you keep your back straight and use your abdominal muscles for support.  Imagine you are sticking your bottom out behind you, rather than worrying about the bending forwards part.

  • Flex your knees so that your knee travels in line with your second toe, but not further forward than the tip of your toes, until you are sitting on the chair.

  • To stand up, shuffle to the edge of the seat and reverse the process, using your buttock muscles to power yourself up from the chair.  DON’T throw your upper body forward, using the momentum to stand up – it should all be very slow and controlled.

    stage 1stage 2stage 3

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