Should kids sit like THIS?

I saw this on social media a few weeks ago and was asked about it by some of you.

The article was about kids sitting in the “W” position and how it could be bad for them.

I heard from quite a few goalie Moms and Dads saying “my kid sits like that all the time – is it bad?”

The answer is simple.

“Yes, and No”

What allows an individual to sit like that is hip internal rotation.

As a rule of thumb we have about 90 degrees of combined hip rotation (internal rotation + external rotation). Some of us are predisposed toward the internal rotation end (awesome if you are a goalie) of the spectrum and some are predisposed to the external rotation end.

So if your child is predisposed to internal rotation, this will probably be quite comfortable for them – if it wasn’t, my guess is they would not choose to sit like that.

Close Pack Position

I will raise one issue and that is the fact that this position puts the hip in what is called a “Close Pack” position. Which applies to any joint, which is put into the end range of motion in two planes.

So in this case, the hip is in full internal rotation AND flexion (although probably not full flexion) so the joint will be in a very closed position narrowing down the joint space in certain areas. The knee will also experience torque with full flexion and external rotation of the shinbone.

It is similar to when you sleep on your stomach with your arms bent at your elbows, resting under your pillow and over your head – that is shoulder internal rotation and flexion.

For a kid, they will spring out of this position and off they go. For us grown-ups, we will probably have to use our hands to unwind our legs and struggle to an upright posture ☺

Final Answer

So the final answer – it depends.

Would I let my kid sit like this for 6 hours a day? No.
Would I freak if they sat like that for 20-minutes before bouncing off on their next adventure? No

I would also trust that if it were uncomfortable for them that they would not choose to sit like that. They are kids; they know what they like and they aren’t too keen to do more of what they don’t like.