I just bought the book and am very excited and impatient to start working on the 8 steps however I have been stumped by stretch sitting.
A little history about me. I have left SI joint dysfunction from an injury deadlifting when I was a teen. I am currently fairly obese and have a serious case of hunched shoulders (and consequently tight pecs)
When I am stretch sitting I am running into a few problems. The first being that my large gut makes it difficult to tell if the angle of my pelvis/back is correct.
Second when I do a shoulder roll and then relax my shoulders naturally gravitate back towards the hunched position. So the last step of relaxing is difficult for me because I know when I relax my shoulders are moving out of position.
Finally I have noticed that when I am stretch sittting I am feeling pressure on my sitz bones to the point of discomfort.
So in summary, any tips to tell if I am in correct stretch sitting position? Also any tips about my shoulder drifting forward, and feeling an uncomfortable amount of pressure in my sitz bones?
16 hours 53 min ago
10/29/2013 - 4:01pm
Congratulations on getting the book and starting to work on Stretchsitting!
The Stretchsitting technique is all about lengthening your low back and trapping that new length against the back rest of your chair so that while you sit, your back remains in gentle traction.
1) Regardless of some extra bulk on the waist as long as you get your spine lengthened, the angle of the pelvis /back is not that important. What is important is to make sure you don't place your bum so far back in the chair that it forces your back into an arch and shortens your low back instead of lengthening it.
2) If your pecs are short and tight, they will pull the shoulders forward, that's to be expected. But over time, with every Shoulder Roll you do, they will get stretched out a little. Rhomboids, the muscles in the back that oppose them, will get a little work out and get stronger and help your shoulders stay in better place.
We also have great shoulder excercises in the book, pages 205-6.
When sitting, it helps to rest your arms on your legs (arms are heavy and have a tendency to pull the shoulders down). Another trick that helps shoulders stay back is to stick your thumbs in your belt loops or your pockets- after you did the Shoulder Rolls. This acts as a door stopper, preventing the shoulders from migrating forward.
It is hard for me to say why you are feeling pain in your sitz bones without seeing you. If anything, Stretchsitting takes pressure off the low back and hips. Make sure you are not arching your low back, that could add pressure on your sitzs bones. And check that your legs are rotating out.
It is tricky to learn movement just from the book. If you can, I would highly recomend attending a Free Worksop- we go over Stretchsitting and some other techniques. If that is not available, we offer Initial Consultations: 45 min inperson and 25 min online.
I hope this helps!