Saddle stool

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With the prevalence of back pain in dentistry unwavering over the past 50 years (around 65 percent), new, alternative methods for sitting and preventing back pain are gaining increased recognition

A saddle-style stool promotes a neutral pelvic position, which supports the spine’s three natural curves in a balanced posture. The thighs slope steeply (45°) downward, so the seated position is halfway between sitting and standing (think ‘supported standing’). The resultant benefits to the musculoskeletal system and from an ergonomic standpoint when compared with conventional style seating are numerous

The stool places you in a ‘tripod’ position with the hips slightly flexed and abducted (spread apart), which is the most stabilize position for the hip joint. (This is actually how babies with hip dysplasia are casted.) Only when the lower body is stable, can the upper body move with ease and precision

Dentists with short torsos who find they have to lift their arms to the sides when working, can easily lower the patient when seated on a saddle stool, allowing more relaxed neck and shoulder musculature

It is easier to maintain neutral spinal posture, since you are halfway between standing and sitting.

Diaphragmatic breathing is improved

It is easier to gain close proximity to the patient when the thighs are steeply sloping downward, which minimizes excessive forward reaching

Moving the stool is easier, since it utilizes the larger thigh muscles instead of the calf muscles

The saddle stool facilitates correct movement at the hips, instead of bending at the waist

Its low profile makes the saddle stool ideal to access the 12 o’clock position in small, confined operatories

It is easier to go from sitting to standing position

The saddle stools activates the deep trunk stabilizing muscles, which have been shown to help prevent low back pain

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