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Old 11-25-2009, 08:41 PM   #1
Collin Thompson
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kneeling vs sitting

hi guys, not sure if this is the right place..but since it has to do with carry-overs to fitness, i suppose its alright. i was curious if kneeling on say a folded sweatshirt or pillow while at my dorm room's desk would be better for me posture/core/hamstring tightness-wise than sitting in a wooden chair? thanks in advance
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Old 11-25-2009, 09:18 PM   #2
Steven Low
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Re: kneeling vs sitting

If it doesn't rape your knees I'd go with the kneeling.

If you're having some lower body issues because of sitting you should read this which I just wrote up.wfs
http://www.eatmoveimprove.com/2009/1...-dysfunctions/
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Old 11-25-2009, 10:27 PM   #3
Katherine Derbyshire
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Re: kneeling vs sitting

Well, sort of... kneeling *with correct posture* requires good core stability, but you can slump when kneeling just like you do when sitting. And kneeling puts a fair amount of weight on your knees, feet, and lower legs (precisely where depending on your posture), which can cause its own problems. Zen monks and others who do a lot of sitting in seiza (Japanese term for the kneeling position) use special pillows designed to reduce the pressure on the legs.

I've got a fair amount of experience with seiza -- it's how we sit in aikido -- and I really wouldn't recommend it for extended use. If you want to avoid sitting in a chair, you might be better off getting a raised desk that you can use while standing. Some people also recommend sitting on a Swiss ball, but I haven't tried that myself.

Katherine
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Old 11-26-2009, 01:13 AM   #4
Jeremy Galo
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Re: kneeling vs sitting

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Originally Posted by Katherine Derbyshire View Post
Some people also recommend sitting on a Swiss ball, but I haven't tried that myself.
I'm sure there are mixed opinions about this, but I loved sitting on my swiss ball at work till somebody jacked it. I was actually a bit sore the first day but it was awesome after that. And I could do random situps and stretching
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Old 11-27-2009, 08:07 AM   #5
John Harris
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Re: kneeling vs sitting

I traded my office chair for a Swiss ball last year. It really took me a few weeks before it was comfortable to sit for long periods. I think it has helped my posture and core stability.
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Old 11-27-2009, 04:02 PM   #6
Mike Mallory
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Re: kneeling vs sitting

I make benches as a side project for that exact purpose,because typical seize posture is pretty gnarly...... www.zenposture.com WFS

Swiss ball is great too.
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Old 12-06-2009, 09:20 PM   #7
Blair Robert Lowe
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Re: kneeling vs sitting

Katherine, if you do some research you'll see the Japanese preferred fudoza for sitting in casual occasions.

You'd see that seiza became popular after the Ogasawara-ryu made it popular and there are some thoughts that requiring it as a sitting posture was made to dull the legs and therefore not have to deal with any quick attacks from a seated position.

You can modify seiza a bit to not dull the legs but it's fairly inevitable.

How about just sitting with the legs crossed?
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Old 12-06-2009, 10:27 PM   #8
Katherine Derbyshire
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Re: kneeling vs sitting

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Originally Posted by Blair Robert Lowe View Post
Katherine, if you do some research you'll see the Japanese preferred fudoza for sitting in casual occasions.

You'd see that seiza became popular after the Ogasawara-ryu made it popular and there are some thoughts that requiring it as a sitting posture was made to dull the legs and therefore not have to deal with any quick attacks from a seated position.
That makes perfect sense. I know some iai styles train draws from fudoza as well. And seiza certainly does dull the legs, even if you're used to sitting that way.

Crosslegged, in my experience, is easier on the knees, but harder on the back, especially if you're trying not to slump.

Personally, standing is the best alternative to sitting that I've found.

Katherine
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Old 12-08-2009, 01:14 AM   #9
Blair Robert Lowe
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Re: kneeling vs sitting

In the JSA, it can come down to pretty much this- all the Iai styles that train from seiza are relatively new (post Sengoku era from the Tokugawa period) compared to the Iai systems that use tate/iai-hiza or fudoza. You don't sit in seiza with armor on (however only the fairly well to do samurai had decent armor compared to the dime a dozen ashigaru [foot soldiers with a polearm and light armor]).

However, many have found that moving in and out of seiza requires flexibility and strength in the lower body and thus it's a good tool.

As well, many of the older koryu from Sengoku have switched to seiza. It's not cut and dry but a generalization.

Basically, you're not going to go into seiza while outside in yoroi. Tate-hiza works very well. As well the whole point of seiza was to use it in court or shogunate settings where weapons weren't allowed (besides those ridiculously long and cumbersome robes) so to limit movement.

An alternate form of seiza, simply called "za" is where you flex the feet and sit on the ball of the foot rather than the instep with your buttocks resting on the achilles. It's not as low as seiza but fairly doable, though it still requires quite a bit of flexibility to move and out of it.
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Old 12-22-2009, 01:31 PM   #10
Daniel Alexander Johnson
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Re: kneeling vs sitting

The seated position puts a lot of pressure on your back. Standing would be best but may not be practical. Just get a good office chair you can adjust and make sure your legs are at 90 degrees and feet are flat with a neutral spine. Then get up for a walk and a stretch every so often.
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