Sit Up Straight

While at work today, I spent some of my time sitting on a stool. I have a bit of a love hate relationship with stools. It’s really great to sit, but you don’t have a back rest. So your choices are to lean over and wind up with a sore back, or use muscles that most people don’t use as often as they should and do their best to sit up straight.

I wound up with a combination of both. I slouched until my back ached, then sat up until my back ached, and back to slouching again. Back and forth. Sit up, slouch down, sit up, slouch down.

At one point when I was sitting up straight, it made me think back to my childhood. My mom was always reminding us to sit up straight, have good posture, relax our shoulders, etc. But most importantly, sit up and have good posture. So while I was growing up, I got in the habit of sitting up straight when I could sense myself slouching.

When I was in second grade, we had a unit where we studied pioneers. We even had a day where we dressed up and pretended like we lived during pioneer times. One thing that the class ahead of us warned all of us about was how the teachers would be really strict about how we had to sit up straight and have good posture. While most kids were really scared of that, I wasn’t as nervous. I already had already been getting guidance to make sitting up straight a good habit.

So on the day of, I remember doing the best I could to always be sitting straight. I would smirk at the kids who didn’t get the heads up and get the play lecture our teacher would dish out. And I would sit as straight as I could. Yeah yeah yeah, I was being a show off. I know. But I was seven. What do you expect from a seven year old?

Anyway, while I was at work and thinking about sitting up straight, it took me on that trip down memory lane through second grade. And it got me thinking, how did people far back in the past, such as pioneers, know the importance of good posture? Was in an aesthetic thing back then? Or did they know how important it really was? Did they get terrible back aches and learn that way?

Sometimes even the most simple thing can get my mind running in a million different ways. Both with memories and with curiosity. Sometime learning the origin of habits, lifestyles, choices, etc. can be the most fascinating thing. And so I can find what could be considered the most mundane thing, such as sitting up straight with good posture, a really fascinating thing when looking at the history of it.

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