I have a son in first grade in public school, and while he has a great teacher who lets them roam around and work on the floor for parts of their working day, there is always the inevitable chair time, and as he gets older, the amount of time with butt in chair will only increase in a public school setting*. And oh the chairs! I volunteer in his classroom once a month and so I get a chance to size up and glare at those chairs on a regular basis. They are plastic, and molded into a C-curve, exactly the shape that puts pressure on the discs and internal organs while also making it nearly impossible to feel supported in your spine. The result? Growing into a schlump and likely into back and neck pain.
Because of what I do for work, naturally my son knows the words "ischial tuberosities" and can locate them on his body. But there's just something not quite inviting about simply saying these two long words, pointing to them, and reminding him to sit on them that doesn't quite capture his attention.
So I came up with a simple way to teach him about sitting on a properly supported pelvis which involves low tech happy and sad face stickers strategically placed. We have done this at home together a couple of times and it's goofy and silly and therefore seems to have imprinted a sense memory on his mind of what it means to sit on his ischial tuberosities vs. his sacrum.
I still hate the chairs, and I hope to have a larger impact in his classroom's alignment and movement options, but hey, for now the simple interventions work.
Make a family "sit on your pelvis" date, or slap on some stickers before dinner one night and see if they start to locate their bodies better in space and get more supported in their spines.
* I, like many, currently only have public school available as an option (I can't afford a more movement friendly private school, and as a single mom with a career home schooling isn't workable). I'm not alone here, and while my son's particular public school is fortunately filled with passionate educators and administration, there is always the bureaucracy- especially when it comes to trying to convince them of the importance of movement on top of their already overfull plates (public school educators are taking a beating out there with these new standards- it's crazy!). All that said, if you're with me and have any ideas or interest in talking about how to get more nourishing movement into this setting, email me! I'd love to talk options. brooke [at] fasciafreedomfighters [dot] com
photo sourced from Yvonne Thompson