Sitting 'up right' Posture
A glimpse into the past
The notion of the ‘line’ is present in both the standing and sitting position. Left and right, front and back, top and bottom must align to allow ease and comfort when sitting. In standing we begin our inquiry at the feet, however, in sitting we rest on our ‘sitz bones’ or more formally Ischial Tuberosities. Finding balance on these points allows the pelvis to rest in a neutral position, which will then allow the upper body to sit comfortably in an upright posture.
When you look at the seated horseman you become amazed at the level of order and integration that is present. The artist was able to show several key elements of integration in a graceful and balanced way. The pelvis is siting just forward of the ‘sitz bones’ from below, while the head is resting easily on the torso. You can see in this image how a line can be drawn up from the pelvis at all the key elements along the lateral line.
The image on the right depicting the seated Pharoah is also a great example of symmetry and balance. The added lines allow you to see how balance can be found from left to right, and top to bottom in an integrated form. You may question the relevance and importance of these balanced blocks of stone. Big deal, maybe? The importance lies in a search (throughout the ages) that moves us to explore a higher level of order, harmony, and integration on our journey to an upright biped.
A Final Note
Finally, these examples of sitting and standing posture are just ‘ideals’ that we strive towards and in a practical setting may be difficult to keep up for a long period. My role in discussing these patterns is to offer the reader visual cues and tools to allow the inquiry and practice to enter our every day life. The inquiry into how best to improve posture is an organic and ongoing process that requires us to be constantly uncovering, addressing, and integrating the basic principles and goals of posture education.