Children are young impressionable creatures who have no sense of … they have no sense at all. Most of their actions are completely random and often leave adults dumbfounded. Children find new ways of accomplishing tasks and going about things.
From doodling on the walls to sucking on almost everything, children have their own ways of creeping everyone out. The best example of this can perhaps be seen in the 2003 comedy Cheaper by the Dozen. Children don’t know what is best for them and what isn’t.
Children and their antics.
This is because their perspectives and outlooks differ greatly than that of adults. These young unknowledgeable minds produce the weirdest moments sometimes. All of which, of course, are ignored by elders. And why shouldn’t they be? These are phases that everyone goes through while growing up.
However, and there always is a ‘however,’ there are some activities of children that should be monitored by adults. One such activity is a seating position called ‘the frog’ or ‘the W’. If you’re wondering what it is and why it should be monitored, look no further. We’ve got all the facts and info you need.
We’re going to talk about a certain sitting position called the ‘W’ or the ‘frog’. It’s very noticeable amongst children.
What is ‘the frog’ or ‘the W’ position?
The ‘W’ or ‘frog’ sitting position is pretty common in children. It involves bending the legs and putting the knees forward. The feet fold along the legs. It is an extremely uncomfortable position so we’d suggest you do not try it.
For children, however, it does not seem to be an issue. The reason for that is that the younger they are, the more elastic they are. However, it is not at all a good position to be in. Even if the child seems to be fairly comfortable, action should be taken right away. The scarier part is that the consequences do not show up immediately.
Why should it be monitored?
The ‘W’ or ‘frog’ sitting position causes a lot of problems in children. There is no strain on the stomach and back muscles while the legs are undergoing full strain.
Since the legs bear the weight of the whole body, this position can trigger or even worsen other body-related problems. It can cause diseases and be the reason for low muscle tone. It also contributes to poor body balance. This is extremely problematic as body balance is absolutely vital. Without it, there is no way life can go on.
Sitting in the ‘W position,’ there is no way the child can achieve active trunk rotation. Weight shifting is not done equally and due to this, the body misbalances. An impairment of bilateral coordination follows, reducing the child’s ability to develop further motor skills such as hand-eye coordination, skipping, and throwing. Trunk muscles are not developed fully as there is no strain on them. They are reliant on the legs for support.
Due to this, children are also unable to reach across their body and carry out tasks that involve the movement of both arms. This can affect their ability to write and carry out other table-top activities in school in the future. The development of a hand preference is also hindered.
Moreover, bones are just about forming at a young age. If something was to fuse abnormally, that would pose a number of serious problems. It can cause the bones to grow sideways.
The ‘W’ position can also result in coordination issues. It can cause the bones to grow sideways. It can also lead to a bent spine at a very young age. Doctors have even said that this may lead to problems as serious as mental retardation. However, that just seems a bit exaggerated.
What doctors have confirmed is that this position is very natural for children to sit in. They have also said that it is something that will not happen to every child that sits this way. The reason for that is that health depends on that certain individual. There are a lot of factors to be taken into account when considering such a thing.
There are some other possibilities that can occur if a child sits in this position for a prolonged period of time.
Hip dislocation can occur very frequently in children who sit in this position, especially those with hip dysplasia. It puts a lot uncalled for stress on the hips, hamstrings, internal rotators, and heel cords. Moreover, it can also lead to shortening and tightening of the muscles. Back and pelvis pain also starts to develop due to this phenomenon. Flat-footedness can also occur.
The only way to solve this problem is by consistency.
Fixing the issue.
Fixing this issue requires consistency. The child should be trained on how to fix their seating position. Demonstrating to them how to sit properly both on and off the floor is a good place to start with. You can educate them about side sitting, long sitting, criss-cross, and pretzel sitting, among others.
These positions suit the body. They allow the child to use both their hands simultaneously on both sides of the body. Weight is shifted easily from side to side and the back and abdominal muscles support the child. Consistency is necessary because your child will resist these changes at first. However, with time, they will start listening and finally let go of this sitting position.
A small table can also be introduced along with a small chair. These can be used to correct the posture of the child. However, if your child is undergoing difficulties while trying to adapt to these positions, do not hesitate to seek the help of a physical therapist or pediatrician. They can then check for underlying issues that may have resulted.
A lot of controversy has sparked lately about this very topic. People have been debating whether it really is harmful or not.
Many argue that it is harmless as they have been sitting in this position for as long as they can remember and nothing has happened to them. However, it should be noted that this can happen to everyone. Its implications are being stated everywhere.
This does not mean that it will surely happen to someone. Also, people who claim to never have it are probably not aware of its symptoms yet. Moreover, it is not a natural position to sit in. To put it shortly, there is no good reason as to why a child should sit like that in the first place.
Some doctors have even said that there is no need to worry if your child is sitting in the ‘W’ position. They say that children respond to their anatomy this way. According to them, children know how to avoid pain in their bodies. They start off with this position but it usually goes away after a certain age.
Adult anatomy is different which is why they fail to understand that this is a normal sitting position in kids. They think it is most stable for them. They also say that there are other more significant things parents should worry about rather than just a sitting position.
The safe side.
However, amidst all the controversy and mixed opinions surrounding the ‘W’ position, it is always important and better to be on the safe side.
Even if you do not believe this position is harmful for your child, have them change it only because it’s a sitting position. If it doesn’t matter how they’re seated, then they might as well be seated in a position that makes you comfortable. They are your children, after all.