The so called W-sitting pose is not good for anyone. It is very important for children to have stable development and parents should always keep an eye on them. Therefore, they should know that this position can cause future orthopedic problems.
Why children practice this W-pose? Children who have developed motorical capabilities like to play more than the others. Obviously, children can’t be cautious and they don’t think of what position they take while playing. This W-sit is defined as a child ‘fixed’ through the trunk. In this way, children play with toys in front, but does not allow trunk rotation and lateral weight shifts or in other words twisting and turning to reach the toys on either side.
Trunk rotation and weight shifts over one side enable a child to keep balance when running outside or playing on the playground. Hence, they are necessary for crossing the midline when it comes to the process of writing and doing table top activities.
Who should not take this position?
W-sitting is especially not recommended to children. It can cause the following negative effects:
- With this W-sitting, children are prone to hip dislocation and if there is a genetic predisposition of hip dysplasia, or if there have been some problem in the past, this position should definitely be avoided.
- This sitting makes your hamstrings, hip adductors, internal rotators and heel cords in a very shortened range.
- There is a possibility of neurological concerns. Trying other sitting positions will help a child in the development of more movement patterns.
This sitting can impede a child from developing a hand preference.
How to prevent this position?
Don’t allow this sitting to become your child’s habit. Be ahead of your child and make sure it never even learn to W-sit. You should be able to teach them different sitting positions. In case you notice your child sitting like this, help him to change its sitting position, or you can say ‘’Fix your legs.’’ Be persistent as much as possible.
When you play with a child on the floor, you should hold his knees and feet together, when kneeling or creeping on hands and knees.
If your kid holds only W-position, not being able to sit alone in any other position, you should consult a therapist about supportive seating or some other alternative postures, such as prone and side lying.