Category: Back Pain, Spine | Author: Stefano Sinicropi | Date: July 3, 2014
If you are reading this while standing, chances are you are leaning on one leg, rather than evenly distributing your weight across both legs. Most people place their weight on one leg while standing without even realizing it. In this article I will take a look at the impact that leaning on one leg has on the back, spine, and other body parts.
The Impact of Favoring One Leg
When you lean on one leg while standing one side of the pelvis drops below the other. This stresses the knee and can contribute to osteoarthritis over time. Additionally, the lumbar spine has to go to extra work to ensure that the torso stays in position. This can lead to low back pain and potential nerve issues over time.
How to Stand Instead
Ideally, you want to stand with both feet flat on the ground and spaced about should-width apart. That way your body weight will be distributed evenly over both legs. The most difficult part about this is remembering to do it. Many people will unconsciously favor one leg over the other while standing. Leaning on one leg for short periods of time is not the end of the world, but if doing it over long periods of time can negatively impact your musculoskeletal system and lead to the development of back and leg pain that may require physical therapy or surgery to fix. You can avoid the necessity of treatment by preventing any pain before it begins.
If your job requires you to stand for long periods of the day, train yourself to realize when you are leaning on one leg. And when you do favor one side, correct yourself by returning your body weight distribution evenly over both feet.