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Wellness

Why Do My Belly Backs? And How Can I Prevent It?

When my back (and sometimes my hips and shoulders) goes into its ‘flipping out’ mode, I start to wonder — and worry — and obsess — and obsess — and obsess — and think about everything that’s ever happened to me.

On a more fundamental level, when we sit in chairs for most of the day, our backs are working hard to hold ourselves up against our chairs while we sit in them. In a nutshell, our backs get sore from bending over, which causes us to get tired quickly and get sick of sitting in our chairs. So you might think that you could put your back to work more by sitting cross-legged, right?

And if not, you might think that getting a lower back workout in before you sit for most of the day probably would help improve your sitting health!

So on a basic level, why do so many of us have flat backs.

Why Do My Back Butts Baffle My Chair?

Why can a chair easily bend and then straighten a person’s spine and back, but not a person’s belly butts?

Many people have a misconception that their butts don’t budge as they sit in a chair or when they bend over. However, they do! They sag and bulge out into their seat.

Your butt also is not meant to sit flat on a floor while you are sitting in a chair, and not as your butt sits in a chair. A person with a big butt (i.e. you! (I’m not gonna talk about those with big asses who sit like you’re about to vomit. They are a different situation.)

Your butt (and a lot of your back and torso) is meant to be placed on something that supports your weight. Even if a person is not sitting on anything, if he/she sits on the floor, the butt is going to sag downward. (In addition, because a person’s butt is flat on the floor, the top of the butt is going to drop down if he/she doesn’t put some supports under it.)

Now, there are a few reasons why not all people’s butts sag, whether that’s from sitting in a good chair, sitting on a couch, or standing in your kitchen. First, there is the human psyche. I remember when I first started working for you, the front of my head kept hitting the floor, and I couldn’t get my head back and up onto my desk.

That’s not why we have to sit in chairs. The reason is we have different bones, muscles, and ligaments in the lower backs and hips than we do in our backs and shoulders.

There are several bones in our lower backs (also called the vertebrae, or thoracic vertebrae), and all of us have at least one of three vertebrae at the lower back (called sacrospinous, or lumbar, spine), and most of us have more. Also, the lower back and its supporting muscles, ligaments, and bones are much more active than the upper back and the shoulders, so their work is done in less than perfect alignment with our vertebrae.

Also, people who sit on the floor are trying to balance themselves on one point rather than two (i.e. their butt), and that’s exactly why our butts sag. As our heads get farther out of alignment with our necks, our backs sink forward and our butt sags out. The more likely you are to get in a bad situation by having the butt sagging out, however, your butt is the person that you need to be worried about.

Secondly, there is the fact that our backs and butts are flexible. If you flex your butt and bend your back, your butt will go up and down very easily. We are not strong enough to pull our lower back muscles over the lower back bones by bending our backs down.

If we sit in a chair, they bend and flex our lower back, then straighten and flex our hips and shoulders with their upper backs.