The ergonomic kneeling chair is the bridge between ancient tradition and modern ergonomics. For thousands of years, Tibetan monks have mastered the art of meditation through practice and acute bodily wisdom. In many religions, devoted monks will sit in quiet meditation in a single position for more than 8 hours a day. The first rule of preparation for an effective meditation is to get the body ready for a prolonged seated posture. The mind can not be relaxed and unless the body is as well. Many monks and meditation practitioners accomplish this bodily preparation through practice, yoga, and mental techniques. The rest of us, can achieve extended, long duration sitting comfort through the use of ergonomics.
With the usage of an ergonomic kneeling chair, desk-bound office workers are able to experience comfort in a kneeling position, which helps to alleviate and reduce chronic back pain and the potential for work-related injuries. Poor ergonomics can be known to lead to injuries in the cervical, thorasic, and lumbar spine such as bulging discs and muscle sprain and strain. To be effective in the office, as well as the meditation temple, a comfortable seat is absolutely mandatory. Seated comfort includes a pain-free back, mild pressure in the seat, and relaxed legs. To achieve this ergonomic structure required for prolonged work sessions, the smart design of the ergonomic kneeling chair successfully conforms to one of the oldest yoga poses: diamond posture.
The word “Vajrasana” (diamond posture) in Sanskrit is made up of two parts. Vajra means ‘Thunderbolt’ or ‘Diamond’, and Asana means posture. Diamond posture looks very similar to the posture encouraged by an ergonomic kneeling chair. The seat slants down and a portion of weight is supported by the knees which rest in a kneeling position. The back and neck are vertically stacked taking alightment responsibility off of the supporting muscles of the abdominals, lumbar spine and obliques. The fatigue in these muscles is often perceived as pain. This seated position offered by an ergonomic kneeling chair promotes vertical spinal alignment and takes a large portion of the weight burden off of the back, as the shins support a sum of the weight.
The benefits of diamond posture, and an ergonomic kneeling chair, are significant:
– The adverse side effects of traditional 90 degree chair’s are alleviated. The supporting muscles around the spine do not need to work as hard because the spine is automatically stacked vertically.
– Alleviates sciatica, back and hip pain.
– Supports digestion as gravity assists the digestive flow in the body’s organs.
– Relives pelvic strain, which supports women in the menstrual process and pregnancy.
– Promotes mobility and motion. A kneeling chair gives you the option of moving a leg off and onto the shin pad, offering a stretch to the hamstrings. This alleviates stagnation and tightness associated with being in the same position for extended periods of time.
As time goes on, we continue to see a trend of fusing Eastern medicine and traditions with Western practical medicine. As these medical approaches continue to fuse, we can expect to see more of the ergonomic kneeling chair in the workplace.