By Jane Tomkiewicz
Does your child slump while sitting at the computer, watching TV, doing homework, reading or at the dinner table? Many parents are concerned about repeatedly having to remind a child to “Sit up straight!”. Parents may be further discouraged that only moments after the reminder their child often returns to the previous slumping position. Are children being disobedient? Are they not being conscientious? Why is sitting up so hard to do?
Many people go back and forth from a collapsed “c” shape curve to an overbracing pushed forward position. This is the “knee jerk reaction” your child probably does when instructed by a parent, teacher or coach to sit up straight. Is that what you do? If so, please try one of the following alternatives to “sitting up straight”.
chair and down into the ground below you..
Whichever variation you choose (balloon or flashlight) continue to think these thoughts for a minute or two and at the end of that time notice how you feel. Has your position changed? Are you sitting differently? Are you sitting more straight? How does it feel to sit straight? Could you comfortably maintain this position?
If thinking these thoughts has resulted in you sitting in a straighter more easeful position, you may be surprised. It may have been very different from how you normally would have straightened yourself up. It may have been much less physical work involving less pushing, heaving and bracing.
People often wonder how they feel so physically different with so little physical effort. The answer is that the exercises in spatial thinking tricked muscles that were overworking (and therefore pulling bones closer together - increasing the three curves in your spine) into letting go. You feel different because you have let go of some overworking patterns that caused imbalances and got in the way of the reflexes and the good postural mechanism! It’s hard to think one thing and do the opposite.