I've been working through 8 Steps to a Pain Free Back and seeing great improvement in my lower back pain. I have a question about stacksitting that I'm hoping someone with experience either teaching the method or practicing it could answer. When I stacksit, my lower back pain is gone, however, my mid to upper back muscles start to burn a little bit and tingle after a few minutes. I thought perhaps I was tensing my shoulders but that doesn't seem to be the problem. One thing that does alleviate it a little is letting my head tip back to a position more like it used to be in (because of the whole stooped, squished position I developed from years at a computer). I suspect the burning and tingling is just my musculature getting used to a new position, but I'm curious to know if others have had this experience as it always makes me question if I'm doing something wrong.
Thanks for your time!
6 years 5 months ago
05/30/2014 - 7:11am
Are teachers not allowed to answer questions here anymore? I see them online but questions better than mine are going unanswered. That's too bad. I wanted to update in case anyone else sees this thread and has the same issue. It took a couple of months, but by slowly easing into stacksitting and using a foam roller (against a wall, not on the floor -- easier to maintain good posture) to loosen up the knots in my upper back and shoulders, I have mostly eliminated the burning and tingling that I used to get. If I stacksit for much longer than I'm used to or have tense or tired muscles from other activities, it still happens, but it's a huge improvement over when I started stacksitting. At this point I'm focusing on stretchsitting, stacksitting, and hip hinging, but I've noticed that between the 3 my posture when standing and walking has improved drastically and I'm getting more flexiblity in many areas. So I would definitely recommend anyone else going through this just keeps easing into it and let your body adjust in its own time.
3 months 1 week ago
07/21/2014 - 6:39am
Yes, I've been experiencing the same sensation when stacksitting, and it's not from the shoulders either. I haven't tired to change the head position, but since my head is deffinitely not where it should be (it's tiled in front compared to a vertical line connecting my head, shoulders, hips, knees and ankles).
5 years 4 months ago
11/15/2012 - 12:51pm
All change must be gradual, and is often slow. There is value in moving slowly between where you are and the ideal, which is where you want to be. Most of us have misused our bodies in some way over the past, and that is what brings us to the Gokhale Method. Your body has protective measures in place, and it will take some time for your body to adapt. Continue practicing gradually and treat the back gently. Lesson 5 will help you learn to maintain length in your spine. Practice some of those measures and you may find stacksitting a little less troublesome. If the low back is sore, you could try some gentle massage or hot baths to relax the muscles.
Norm Brekke, Gokhale Methods Teacher, Minneapolis
6 years 5 months ago
05/30/2014 - 7:11am
Thanks for the reply, Norm. Appreciate your time. I wanted to update again and I can now say it's been weeks since I last felt the tingling and burning in my upper back. I'm amazed when I remember how much it affected me in the beginning -- it's no longer a consideration at all, I can stacksit however long I want and the old problem doesn't even enter my mind. Pretty cool to think how much my body has changed and that my muscles were so unfamiliar with sitting up straight! Easing into the Method and just giving your body time to adjust really makes all the difference.
18 hours 29 min ago
12/05/2013 - 11:02am
Good for you reading the book and your commitment to improving your health and posture. Generally speaking, stacksitting usually is not painful. It is sometimes difficult for people to antevert (tip forward) the pelvis. The vertebrae should be stacked on top of each other so that the bones are holding you in position gently with your muscles supporting you. The trick is to be careful that you do not sway in your back (rib anchor needs to be down so that you are not swayed). My guess is that your pain is the erector spinae muscles in your back, around the bra strap area. They are the muscles that are long and run vertical on either side of your spine. Sometimes they fatigue with the rib anchor and tall standing as well as your stacksitting. Pain is a great indicator that you may have done "too much of a good thing."
Your muscles are learning and stretching as your posture changes; these little fibers sometimes act up a bit when they are not used to the stretch. Just back off a bit and try a little again. Pain is always a reason to back off. It has taken years with our habits so the body is not fond of changing quickly. Sounds like you are on the right track.
I suggest taking a Foundations course where you can recieve hands on training from a teacher. Good luck-