Gokhale chair

jenalfson
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Gokhale chair

I recently purchased the Gokhale chair and am having difficulty getting it to work for me.  I took foundations class 2 years ago and am a huge Gokhale fan, practicing this method has changed my life and I share with others often. So, I feel strange saying that the chair isn't working for me, but it isn't, and I can't seem to figure out why.  I've tried everything and have re-read the sitting and inner corset sections of the book.  I still can't figure it out for sure, but suspect that it may just have too large and too firm of a seat for me.  I'm 5'2" and spend 8 hours on a computer at a desk all day, so long-term comfort is key. The 100 year old antique chair I've been using the past 2 years with my Gokhale modifications like a wedge is far more comfortable and has kept me pain-free, but the Gokhale chair causes pain when I sit in it.  One problem I'm having with the Gokhale chair is the depth of the seat, when I stretch sit my feet don't reach the ground, and it causes my lower back to hurt.  My old chair was fine because the seat depth is smaller, allowing my legs to angle down and hit the floor.  Also, the large depth causes the edge of the chair to hit the bend in my knee and lower leg, putting pressure as well.   When I stack sit, the firmness of the seat starts to hurt my upper leg, as it's quite a bit of pressure over several hours.  So, both sitting techniques are causing pain.  I would think it's all me except that my old chair has worked great for 2 years with no pain at all.  I purchased the Gokhale chair because I wanted a chair that works that is also professional looking (unlike my old antique chair!).  Anyway, I have hope of making the Gokhale chair work for me, but I think I need some help with it.  If I still can't get it to work after some help, then I think I'll need to return it, unfortunately.  Can someone help me figure out if we can make the Gokhale chair work for me?

Foto abeja Judy Hummel's
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Oh no!  We need to figure this out, as we do call this the "pain free" chair.  It is difficult to troubleshoot online, so if there is a teacher in your area, we may need to call in reinforcements.

In my experience, there are some people who are too short for the chair, even in its lowest position. Try putting a block or folded blanket or something under your feet on both while both stretchsitting and stacksitting, and see if this helps. (Do remember to maintain the external rotation fo the leg).

I am going to ask Esther directly to help us troubleshoot.  In the meantime, try the support for your feet and let me know how that goes.

Sincerely,

Abeja Hummel

Gokhale Method instructor

Boonville, CA

jenalfson
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Thanks Abeja, I really appreciate your help with this.  I put something under my feet as you suggest today to stretchsit in it and it did feel better.  I only did it for about an hour though, so I'll try for longer tomorrow and see how my body feels.  I'll keep you posted. 

Jen

San Rafael, CA

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HI Jen,

Other ideas that have come from other teachers:

1--if you can, it can help to sit cross-legged while stretch-sitting.

2--Esther is in the process of making a petite sized chair.  I have not gotten an answer as to when it will be available or how you can trade yours out, or if you can return it.  It's good that you're "local-ish" to the main office.  We'll figure this out.

Let me know how the prop under the feet goes.

Abeja

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Here's some great advice from a fellow teacher:

"I am 5"3 with rather short legs compared to torso, but for some reason I don't have a problem with the depth or size of the chair seat. It definitely is too large for some people, however, and hopefully the petit chair will remedy that when it is ready for production. For stretchsitting, I place my feet on the feet/prongs of the chair base, which are also perfectly angled to provide a bit of openness and turn-out in my hips. I think having the openness, so my knees actually point over the 'corners' of the seat, makes the depth more comfortable, although you would think the distance to the corners would be longer than if my legs were pointing straight ahead. 

For the student who posted on the forum (and for everyone wondering about office chairs), it is important that the both the feet and the arms are at the right height. If, when your feet are comfortably on the floor, your elbows fall below the top of your desk or surface, then you are sitting too low; elbows that float above the desktop are too high, since the arms should be able to hang at a horizontal right angle when they are at your keyboard or whatever object you are working with. This student may need to adjust the height of her desk, if possible, or yes place something under her feet. She could also attach a Stretchsit Cushion to her chair (although yes this seems redundant) to pad out the back and lessen the depth of the seat."

I hope that helps!

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