7 Reasons Why Standing is Awesome (and sitting is not): Reason #1

by Dr. David Sloan, D.C., DIBCN, FIACN and Dr. Heather Sloan, D.C.

Standing helps keep your joints healthy

The very first reason in our seven-part series of why standing is awesome is an issue we all worry about: the health of our joints. Dr. Dave gives us some insight here on how sitting can damage our joints, and how standing can help keep them healthy.

Dr. Dave:

When you sit you shorten the muscles in the front of the spine and the backs of the legs. Not a problem if it is for a short time, but if it is over and over, day in and day out, it is a BIG problem. If a muscle is kept in a shortened position for a prolonged period of time, it will eventually ball up and lose its ability to lengthen. If it is still kept in that shortened position it can go through a structural remodeling process that will potentially permanently change the muscle.

Who cares if a muscle is a little short, right? You do—trust me. A shortened muscle creates compression of the joints that it crosses. Compressed joints not only hurt and feel stiff but they also wear out faster. I don’t know about you, but one of my goals is to go out with as many joints as I came in with. Short muscles are weaker and are not very good at their job. The shorter they get, the more pressure they put on your joints.

In a standing position the muscles are lengthened. Muscles that are long do not have the same compressing effects that short, tight muscles have.You are also in a position that allows for more movement options. Movement is the real key. If you want to be free, be alive, you have to move. So spend more time standing and keep those joints healthy!

Keep an eye out for Reason #2 coming up next week, when we’ll be talking about how standing can help prevent injuries.


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