In my first few weeks working as a chef at the Hub Cafe, I started feeling pain in my lower back and legs from long periods of standing. After work, I tried to ease my achy legs by sitting on my comfy sofa at home but this didn't help to release the tension. It felt like blood was pooling in my lower legs.
Something needed to be done. In my mind's eye, I saw my dad sitting cross-legged on the floor and felt this was a hint as to what I should be doing. When my dad was alive he had excellent mobility well into his 80s. He would often sit on the floor and had no problem crouching down especially when gardening. So I have been using the floor to sit as much as possible when at home.
Benefits of Floor Sitting
In many traditional cultures, the floor is used not just for sitting but for preparing foods and eating too. This practice often continues well into old-age. Floor Sitting helps to strengthen muscles, joints and supports mobility. After all getting up from the floor takes strength, balance and agility.
Whilst floor-sitting, I noticed that I continually made adjustments with my position to support the body. These movements and adjustments help to strengthen posture. With chair-sitting, it is the chair that does all the supporting, which does not strengthen posture!
Sitting down on the floor to eat is traditionally done in many Eastern cultures too. In my childhood and teens I can remember many Asian families doing this.
According to Ayurvedic principles, sitting on the floor to eat promotes the right posture for digestion. Chair sitting, on the other hand promotes blood flow to the feet, which can hinder blood to circulate back up the body and promotes issues like varicose veins.
So for the past month, I have given up the sofa and opted for the floor instead. My faithful husband has joined me on the floor too, much to the delight of our grown up kids who now get the best sofa seats for relaxing in the evening.
At first it was a bit tricky getting the position right but using comfy cushions has helped a lot. I have noticed that my legs feel a lot better as sitting in this position helps promote circulation and eases muscle tension. My hubby has also noticed that the end of day itching and swelling in his feet has reduced too. Again this is due to improved circulation in the lower legs and feet from floor sitting.
Other Natural ways I have been using to Support my Legs
- Massaging magnesium oil in the morning and castor oil in the evening on my legs. Magnesium oil is absorbed through the skin and helps muscles and nerves to relax. Castor oil when used for massage helps to ease pain and supports blood circulation in my legs.
- Dry skin brushing by using a dry skin brush on my body start from my feet and brushing upwards towards the heart. This helps to support both lymphatic and blood flow
- I have been consuming foods rich in Vitamin C and resveratrol like strawberries, blackberries, blueberries and oranges. This helps to strengthen and repair blood vessels.
If you want to try floor sitting then try building it up slowly at first. Using soft cushions helps to make it more comfortable. We've been using the padded seats from our conservatory furniture, which makes it really comfortable whilst supporting my legs and back after long periods of standing.