MOVEMENT IS ESSENTIAL TO SPINAL HEALTH
Workers using conventional office chairs and computer
furniture often suffer from both lower back pain and upper back
pain due to a lack of movement and high-compression loadings on their spine.
Research in cellular biology has shown that the
cartilage cells of our intervetebral discs, because of the immense
pressure under which they operate, are unable to receive nourishment
from normal blood supply but rely instead on movement. If this
movement is lacking our discs will gradually lose their elasticity
as the cells begin to die off - literally from starvation - starting
from the centre and gradually working outwards. This process may
often lead to an eventual prolapse ("slipped disc") with
its associated severe back pain.
The unique advantage you enjoy with the exact balance and continuous, gentle movement
of the Kneelsit chair, however,
virtually eliminates the chances of this problem occuring.
Balance effect, proprioception and postural awareness
The awareness of posture, movement and changes in equilibrium
derived from receptors of your muscles, joints, tendons and vestibular
Once the seat and your body have been correctly
positioned, inbuilt movements of the seat axle set
up a sensation or feeling of balance at the base of your
spine. This links up with the natural balance mechanism
of your inner ear (vestibular apparatus) through a series
of receptors forming a continuous feedback loop - the
"balance effect" - which activates and
develops your sense of proprioception. Reports indicate
that regular use of the Kneelsit balance chair over time brings
about a more conscious appreciation of the working of
your body's neuroreceptors, particularly those governing
your general level of postural awareness. As a result over time the maintenance of good posture becomes virtually a
Not only does regular stimulation of your vestibular apparatus assist
you in maintaining alertness (see below), it also appears to influence
certain learning centres of your brain. Neuroanatomist D.L.
Clark from Stanford engaged in research into the effects of movement
(specifically vestibular stimulation) on the development of balance
and motor skills in children.Working both with normal children
and others affected either by Down's Syndrome or cerebral palsy
he split the whole group at random giving the first group of children
one hour a day's regular stimulation over a period of three months.
The second group acted as a control.
on balance and motor skill co-ordination were carried out
at the beginning and on completion of the trial. Scores of the
children subject to stimulation increased by more than 20%
compared to the control group. What was even more gratifying,
however, was the discovery that the rate of improvement among
the handicapped children was almost equal to that of the normal
The gentle back and forth movement of your body which occurs naturally
when using the kneel-sit stimulates the tiny cilia lining the
tubes of your vestibular apparatus (balance mechanism of the inner
ear) to help keep you alert. You will of course be familiar with
what happens when a person is falling asleep in a chair and leans
too far in one direction. This "alerting mechanism"
will tend to jerk them awake . An interesting insight on this
phenomenon is given in the 1989 Guinness Book of Records which
cites a woman in England who stayed awake eight days and seven
hours by rocking in a rocking chair ( i.e. stimulating her "alerting
mechanism"). - - - - - - see also Ken's
remarks in the Testimonials.
"The reticular activating
system receives input from both auditory and vestibular systems. One of its
major functions is to promote general alertness and attention as well as assist
in determining how sensitive one will be to any given stimulus."
p.41).Sensory Integration and Learning Disorders. Los Angles: Western Psychological Services.
The awareness of posture, movement, and changes in equilibrium derived from receptors of the muscles, joints, tendons and vestibular apparatus.