Proper Sitting Position

Proper Sitting Position

 People today are spending more and more time seated at a desk for work, as well as for fun. Some people spend as much as 12 hours a day sitting, but sitting for an extended period of time is a more recent problem. More studies are being done investigating the negative effects that extended periods of sitting have on the body. Sitting improperly for a long period of time may lead to back pain, neck pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, and even leg pain. The following are a few tips to make sure you are sitting properly.


The goal of proper sitting is to be in a neutral body position. This means that your body is relaxed and in proper alignment. Unwanted stress on the body when sitting can lead to stress on the system. If done for long periods of time this can lead to muscle strain and an increased probability of developing a musculoskeletal disorder.

Proper Sitting Position:

 –       Forearms, wrists, and hands should in a straight line and almost parallel with the floor.

–       Head should be looking forward in a neutral position in line with your body.

–       Shoulders should be relaxed and not rolled forward. Arms should be relaxed at the side of your body.

–       Elbows should be in close to your body, and bent at 90-120 degrees.

–       Feet should be flat on the floor.

–       The back should be vertical, and the lumbar should be supported.

–       Hips and thighs are supported by the seat, and should be almost parallel with the floor.

 Things to Remember:

 Even though you may be sitting with good posture, it is not good to stay in one position for extended periods of time. Be sure to change your position throughout the day. You can adjust your seat and backrest to get a slightly new sitting position. Be sure to stretch, especially regions of the body that may be becoming tight or sore. Take your breaks to walk around and stay hydrated.

What You Need For A Proper Work Station:

 –       Be sure you have a chair that offers proper lumbar support. The chair should accommodate for the seated height of the user (feet flat on the floor). Be sure the front of the chair is not digging into the back of your knees or thighs. If using an armrest, make sure it is not in the way when doing your activities.

–       Be sure the keyboard is at a position that is easily accessible by your hands. The mouse should be nearby the keyboard so it can be used without reaching for it. Be sure there are no sharp edges that may dig into your hands or forearms (this can lead to carpal tunnel problems).

–       Be sure the top of your monitor (or whatever you are looking at) is at or just below eye level. You should be able to read it with your neck in a neutral position. The distance to the screen should be enough for you to easily read it while keeping your head in a neutral position. Be sure it is directly in front of you so you don’t have to twist your neck in order to see it.


This information is for educational purposes only. Seek the advice of a health specialist before making any changes to your healthcare.