Structural Integration - Deep Tissue Bodywork, Posture and Movement Education

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Ida Rolf, Ph.D.

Posture and Technology – 9 New Ways We Sit

April 29, 2013 : Blog

Leave it to a high end furniture manufacturer to study the ways people sit and create a solution designed to support those habits best. With new and emerging technology we have many more options for our daily posture. This can create problems for some, but it also really opens up the possibility for more dynamic daily positioning. Even sitting at your desktop computer in the best possible posture will after an 8 hour day take it’s toll on you. Variability can be a godsend, just ask the numerous people who use a standing desk because sitting is problematic for them.

Well, in this era of tablets and smartphones we have so many more postures to choose from on a typical work day. Of course proper posture in a dynamic way is much harder to learn, but once you get it it can save you from chronic problems.

“9 New Ways We Sit, Thanks to Tech

The workplace most of us are accustomed to has been optimized for the desktop computer: Start with a table, plop a machine on top of it, add a chair, add a human. This has not been the most creative of systems, maybe, but it’s made sense: The computers in question have been expensive and bulky and, by design, stationary. Everything else, human included, has been relatively flexible.

But that set-it-and-forget-it model of office ergonomics could be changing. As smartphones and tablets — computers whose whole point is their mobility — become more ubiquitous in our lives, they’re becoming more common at the office. And they’re changing not just the way we communicate with other people, but the way our bodies communicate with their surroundings.

Office furniture manufacturer Steelcase realized that its product designs would likely need to adapt to this new mobile-enabled workspace. So the company conducted a study of office workers — 2,000 of them, across 11 countries — to see how they relate to the many machines they now use to get their work done.

Through in-person observations, interviews and snapshots of people at work, Steelcase concluded that the way we compute is, indeed, changing the way we sit. “What we noticed,” says James Ludwig, Steelcase’s vice president of global design and engineering, “was these new technologies, this new breed of devices — and the new sociology we were seeing at work — had driven nine new postures that we had never seen before…”

Read the rest of the article here.