I am 5 feet tall with a 2-year chronic low back pain from overworking with a computer. Unfortunately, I could not figure out how to make the Stretchit work for me. I went thru all the video clips and the forum discussion. I read that the cushion SHOULD be located around thoracic bones, although her demonstration video (with a folded chair) shows that it is placed between the end of thoracic and the top part of the lumbar bones and I also saw in the Forum that it is "OK" to overlap to lumbar bones. I expect there should be one instruction to make it work according to the inventor's understanding on bone/muscle structure.
I undertstand it is not supposed to be placed in the small (lumbar). If the bottom of the cushion is placed on the bottom of the thoracic bones, then the lumbar bones are not touching anything (i.e., the back of a chair)? So, the muscle around lumbar will get tighten up to stay upright??? The natural friction against the cushion (i.e., without intentional pressure against the cushion) is not strong enough to keep the thoracic muscle stay "hooked".
Currently, very uncomfortable regardless of where I place it... I really wish that this would help my chronic back pain, after reading so many good review comments. Before I return it, I'd like know what might be my problem. S.O.S. Thanks, in advance.
11 hours 6 min ago
08/20/2010 - 8:19pm
I would say don't give up on your stretch-sit cushion until you have tried using it with a number of small but significant variations - sometimes this is necessary to find the 'sweet-spot' for your particular body/chair combination.
I have had students find the following tips helpful:
1. Train yourself to hitch on to the cushion in an easier situation... try different chairs/seats - car seats can be particularly good because you can recline them a little to help with friction and relaxation of back muscles. Remaining tense in the lumbars may be the only way your body knows to keep itself upright if the deeper spinal/abdominal muscles aren't working for you in everyday life. (This is covered in depth in the GMF Course and in 8 Steps to a Pain-Free Back.) You want your lumbar muscles to be pretty relaxed to stretch from the stretch-sit, which is where more support from reclining a little can help.
2. Make sure that your chair doesn't curve the cushion either horizontally or vertically - this will reduce the area that can make contact with your back. You can use towels to pad out and correct any curvature.
Hope that helps!
2 years 8 months ago
02/24/2011 - 9:40am
I am also 5 feet tall and have trouble with placement of the cushion, especially in situations where it serves not only for traction but to create space for the behind in, say, an airplane or straight-backed seat. The space between my shoulderblades and bottom is not really larger than the cushion when in a seated position: too high, and it inhibits the shoulder roll, too low, and it doesn't leave the room for the butt. More feedback would be great.