Get off the floor.
Just returned from my semi-weekly yoga class and am back to work at the cutting table. Since I am recuperating from a back spasm that hit right before Sew Expo, the whole ergonomical mechanics of sewing have been on my mind lately (and a very good reminder why I need to take breaks and go to yoga regularly).
I am headed back to Japan for more silk study in May. The tour director, Glennis Dolce, and I were roommates during Sew Expo and so of course there was much discussion of the upcoming tour during the week. One of the many topics that came up was the physical demands of staying in a traditional Japanese inn. These hotels do not have Western-style beds. Guests sleep on traditional futons placed on tatami mats on the floor. I had never thought about it before (being a “youngish” person in decent health) but it can be very challenging for many people to get up off the floor from this position.
As a result, I have made a promise to myself - that I will make it a goal to always be able to get off the floor. That may seem pretty simple but if you think about it, it’s a survival skill that will inevitably become more difficult with age. I’ve adjusted my workspace so that I stand at my sewing machines and worktables (to minimize sitting and hopefully encourage strength, balance, and better posture) but the yoga is here to stay. We don’t always think about the physical demands that sewing can bring until injuries bring them to our attention. Maybe it’s time for sewing fitness classes. Let’s get off that floor.