Learn to sit correctly to have a healthy back


Most likely, these days we’ve been sitting more than we should have. Due to the quarantine and homeworking, the amount of time we are sitting has increased. That’s why, it’s more important than ever, to sit in the right way and hence take care, the best we can, of our back.

Our cervical spine is, clearly, one of the regions of our back that is most affected. Many hours sitting in front of a computer lead an overload on our cervical muscles. If we are sitting in an incorrect way, for example too laid back, slouching at an angle of more than 90º, we are forcing an extension to our lumbar spine and an excessive, continuous flexion on our cervical spine, causing cervical muscular pain (neck pain).

On the other hand, if our posture is sunk in the chair, we’d be extending our cervical spine to compensate. This will lead to a cervical pain for overloading the posterior facets and ligaments.

The ideal position is to sit upright, forming a 90/110º degree between our back and our legs. It can be also beneficial to use a lumbar support. It is also important that the screen of our computer is at the height of our eyes so that our cervical spine is at a neutral position.

Finally, it is advisable to frequently change our position. Getting up of the chair at least once every hour, walking during at least 10 mins and doing some stretching exercises of our arms and lumbar spine.

© Dr. Pablo Clavel, Neurosurgeon, Instituto Clavel, 2020