Is it possible to reduce the pain of sitting too long by using a yoga ball or an exercise ball instead of a seat? Research suggests that it is unlikely. Here’s why.
We are a culture that was comfortable sitting , regardless of whether it was required by our profession or just for leisure back at home.

Exercise ball

Sitting for long periods of time is not good for our bodies and can lead to a variety of health problems. Except for a few exceptions, most people like to sit. It’s become a terrible habit which in the future can lead to an epidemic of postural issues . Sitting too long can lead to neck and back pain, as well as headaches.

Poor posture, slouching, and unengaged abs all are common for anyone who sits in a chair for long periods of time. A person who is poor in posture and core strength can have devastating effects. Core strength plays a vital role in supporting and maintaining a healthy spine. Can an exercise ball be used to relieve back pain?

Is it possible to relieve back pain by sitting on an exercise ball?

Some ergonomics experts debate the use of it as a desk-chair. Some blogs, articles and ergonomics experts suggest that subtle muscle contractions can be caused by switching between a traditional desk chair and an exercise ball throughout the day. These contractions are necessary to keep you balanced and stable. You must also engage your hips and legs muscles to improve muscle tone.

This is the idea anyway. There is no definitive evidence to support the “beneficial” claims that a stability ball can be used in lieu of or in combination with a chair. The fun-looking, big ball could actually cause more harm than good.


Why should you avoid using an exercise ball as a chair?

Theresa Marko DPT is a clinical specialist orthopaedic physical therapy. She says that if you are experiencing back pain, it is best to not sit on an exercise ball at work. Because back pain is usually accompanied by muscle spasms. This causes pain by making already tight muscles work harder when you sit on a ball.

A stability ball can be more uncomfortable for those who have poor posture habits, such as leaning on the desk and slouching while working (guilty). You are more likely to strain your muscles by using an exercise ball.

“Another thing with stability balls is that most people will probably sit on one too low, which could hurt the back more.” Stability balls have the same ergonomic requirements as a chair, including proper height. It can be challenging and time-consuming to determine the right ball height for your desk and you. The ball is not like a chair. It loses height every time the air pressure drops, so you will need to pump it and adjust it frequently.

Research on Exercise Balls

Research shows that a yoga ball is not a better option than a desk chair. A stability ball can increase the load on your lumbar spine (lower back), which can cause discomfort and pain.

One study found that participants felt more discomfort than the benefits of a substitute chair. Others show no benefit from using a stability ball to build core strength and reduce back pain.

How can I reduce my back pain while sitting?

Dr. Marko says, “I recommend people to sit in an ergonomic desk office chair with great support and good ergonomics (heights),”. You can also use a standing desk or a walking desk.

She also stresses on the importance of doing hip flexor stretching. When you sit in a chair for so long, your hips become tight. Stretching will open your hips and improve your back. Your spine attaches to the hip flexors, so if they are tight they pull on your spine and cause your pelvis to turn forward.
Ask your physical therapist or healthcare provider for instructions on how to perform hip flexor stretching exercises safely so that your neck and back don’t get hurt.

No matter where your bum is placed, sitting for long periods can lead to poor posture, body mechanics, decreased lung capacity, and even blot-clots. Stretch and take small steps as often as you can. Use the stairs. Keep moving and if you do have to sit, be aware of your posture. If you are slouching, correct it.

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