How hard is it for you to get up from sitting on the floor? A study done in 2014 found that the ease of standing from sitting on the floor can be a significant predictor of longevity in older adults. More recent research in May 2020 backs up the findings.
The study participant’s ranged in age from 51 to 80. In the follow-up period after the study, those who found standing from a sitting position on the floor easiest had a substantially longer life expectancy. A person’s ease of standing from a sitting position is a reflection of overall health and fitness.
As we age our joints and muscles tend to get stiff. Spending some time sitting on the floor and then standing up everyday can lead to better balance, coordination and stability. It will move the joints and muscles and strengthen a person’s core and legs. When standing, the core of a person’s body is engaged to pull itself up. Doing this multiple times will increase balance and stability and decrease risk of falls.
The procedure of standing is similar to an exercise squat. Therefore, doing this on a daily basis is essentially getting the same low body exercise benefit as a squat. The joints and body parts such as hips, knees, feet, shoulders, wrists and elbows and all used, thus increasing mobility.
Sitting on the floor also encourages a person to stay more upright instead of slouching or hunching over. It is important to sit correctly so as to not put extra strain on vertebrae or spinal discs. Always sit with your torso straight and tall and gently pull your shoulder blades together and down. You can also use a towel or small pillow to ease any discomfort on the tailbone. This will also put your pelvis and spine in better alignment.
You can sit down cross-legged, legs straight out in front of you or with your feet flat and knees bent. These are all good ways to sit on the floor. Before you sit on the floor visualize doing it. Then when you are ready to stand visualize it again. This will help with the process and is a good practice to get into when starting to sit and stand everyday.
To view the original scientific study click below:
Ability to sit and rise from the floor as a predictor of all-cause mortality