Good Posture for Hobbies and Crafting
If you enjoy any of the following activities - crafting, jewelry making, scrapbooking, sewing, needlepoint, crocheting, knitting, or decorative painting - you face some extra posture challenges.
The typical mechanical problems that crafter's face include:
- long hours of sitting
- awkward positions involving arms, shoulders, wrists, neck and lower back
- twisting, turning, reaching for tools
- hand tool use, especially plier use and filing, forces wrist out of its neutral position
- bad seating design
- slouching sitting posture
- crafting at incorrect working heights
Therefore, crafters often exhibit the following alignment problems:
- forward-head position
- stooping upper backs
- rounded shoulders
- tight, tense neck muscles
- carpel tunnel syndrome
- tight chest muscles
- aching lower back
- weak mid-back muscles
If you enjoy crafting activities, there are numerous benefits to be gained from improving your posture: eliminating neck and back pain, strengthening weak muscles, and reducing stress on overworked muscles. Once you learn correct body mechanics, you can craft longer with more comfort.
Correct Sitting Posture
- Slide your buttocks all the way to the back of the chair seat so you are sitting squarely on your bottom. This helps spine align correctly.
- Your lower back should be right up against the lumbar support.
- Thighs should be in a ninety-degree angle to torso and lower legs in a ninety-degree angle to thigh.
- Feet should be flat on the floor. If your feet don't touch the floor, use a stool to help keep tensions out of lower back.
- Armrests should be right where your elbows naturally fall.
- Forearm should be in a ninety-degree angle, or lower, with upper arm.
- When arms rest on armrest, this takes 25 percent of the pressure off lower spinal disks and greatly decreases upper back stress.
- Sit up straight without hanging your head forward from your neck.
- Don't let upper back slump forward.
- The wrong chair can cause much discomfort.
- Sitting puts 40 percent more pressure on lower back disks.
- Have a seat that is adjustable both in height and angle.
- Your chair should help keep your spine vertical, provide lumbar support, and have a swivel seat for easy shifting.
Tips For Less Tension
- Take movement breaks every forty-five minutes or so.
- Work for shorter periods of time.
- During breaks, relieve muscle tensions with exercises/stretches.
- Even if doing the same craft, alternate working heights. Have one work surface that works for sitting and one that works for standing.
- Studies have linked mostly standing or mostly sitting jobs with more lower back pain than jobs where changes in posture occur.
- Get a good chair.
- Get a table that adjusts to different heights.
» Return to table of contents «