Does driving twist your hips?

For a lot of people, driving can be painful. For years, I really hated getting in a car because sitting in a car seat for more than 10 or 20 minutes would cause a burning sensation in my left thigh. I found some ways of getting around that pain but I knew there was something about driving that seemed to throw things off.

A lot of clients have told me that driving really irritates different parts of their bodies. Sometimes it’s a shoulder or a knee or the entire back, but the one common thread that I can identify with both my own experience and the experiences clients have had is this:

Driving makes you slouch and twist.

The slouching I probably don’t even need to clarify. Unless you’re in a unique car with a particularly ergonomic seat (lumbar support DOES NOT mean it’s ergonomic), you have probably felt yourself slouched in the car.

But the twist you may not have noticed, so check this out. Next time you’re in the driver’s seat and are parked at a stop sign, look down and see if your pelvis is straight. For a lot of people, and almost always for someone driving a manual, the left hip will be shifted forward — meaning your left butt cheek and left knee will be closer to the front bumper than your right knee and butt cheek. I’ve noticed this in many different cars and with different drivers, so I’m starting to conclude that this is universal. Before I start shouting it from the mountain tops, though, I’d like to see what you find.

Go try this out in your car and see if you find the same thing. I’d appreciate it if you post your findings in the comments section below. Don’t forget to leave car’s make, model, and transmission type as well!


About the Author

Matt Hsu is a trainer and orthopedic massage therapist. He fought a long battle with chronic pain all over his body and won. He blends the principles he learned in his journey, empirical observations with clients, and relevant research to help others get their lives back.

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