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Technique: How do you Sit on the Ground (Comfortably)?
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Delmar O'Donnell
(Bolster)

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
Technique: How do you Sit on the Ground (Comfortably)? on 06/03/2014 00:16:45 MDT Print View

What is your preferred way to sit on the ground (with no chair)?

I tend to sit on my knees/ shins/ ankles, knees fully bent, but eventually my ankles get tired of my feet pointing almost straight back in this position. So then I'll shift weight either left or right, drop one hip on the ground, using both arms to support with my palms on the ground. (Think Disney's Pocahontas at the beginning of 'Just Around the River Bend,' except I haven't silky long hair to blow in the wind.) But I've never gotten good at sitting on the ground for long, and eventually revert to lying down or standing up.

I find the lotus position takes too much of the lumbar curve out of my back for long term comfort. This matches what my PT tells me, and that's to keep the curve in the lumbar region when sitting.

What's your solution to comfortable sitting on flat ground, sans chair, sans rock, sans log?

Edited by Bolster on 06/03/2014 22:08:26 MDT.

Mole J
(MoleJ) - F

Locale: UK
practice on 06/03/2014 04:18:50 MDT Print View

I find any style of lotus position takes too much of the lumbar curve out of my back for long term comfort.
_______________________________

That's because you aren't 'fit' enough structurally. (I wasn't either, but am now). Try Yoga or Pilates classes. It will help with all your hiking physio. The classses will teach you the awareness of bodily micro adjustments which are necessary(and take work initially) to strengthen your body to attain a simple sitting position (as practiced easily by non chair using peoples).

Practice at home each day for a time. Start by sitting on a height to support your current posture. Foam yoga blocks are good - start on say 3 then work down to nothing over time (a month or 6 depending on perseverence - nothing is free)

Hope this is useful

Bill Law
(williamlaw) - M

Locale: SF Bay Area
Re: Technique: How do you Sit on the Ground (Comfortably)? on 06/03/2014 10:18:59 MDT Print View

What's your solution to comfortable sitting on flat ground, sans chair, sans rock, sans log? Seems a very basic skill that I lack.

Keep walking until you get to a rock, a log, or a chair. I carry a tripod stool so I can stop sooner.

Sense to do likewise seems like a more basic skill. But such sense perhaps comes only with the old age that makes sitting on the ground less attractive.

Delmar O'Donnell
(Bolster)

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
Hike till you Find a Rock on 06/03/2014 10:21:49 MDT Print View

LOL good one Bill. Yeah, I take advantage of logs and rocks when they afford themselves. Some of my recent desert hiking has been pretty durn featureless as far as good sittables are concerned.

I doubt I'm your junior, age-wise. But since the UL ethos means less of everything, I assume it sanctions less common sense, too.

How much does your tripod stool weigh? [EDIT] No, no, I take that back. I'm not going to start carrying a stool; you are tempting me and you should not.

Edited by Bolster on 06/03/2014 11:18:10 MDT.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Hike till you Find a Rock on 06/03/2014 11:40:26 MDT Print View

A bear canister works great as a camp chair. Multi-purpose, and all that.

I'm not sure, but I think you could use it as a beer keg, as well.

--B.G.--

Valerie E
(Wildtowner) - M

Locale: Grand Canyon State
Beer Keg on 06/03/2014 11:50:13 MDT Print View

LOL, so THAT's what we should fill my husband's Bearikade Expedition with: Beer!!!

Nutritious, delicious, and hydrating! Hmmmmmmm, I wonder what that would weigh...there's always a fly in the ointment... ;^)

Delmar, I carry a chair sometimes, being frequently in the desert. Yup, extra weight, but it sure is nice at the end of a long day (with a little bourbon in hand)...

Delmar O'Donnell
(Bolster)

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
Discipline on 06/03/2014 12:03:32 MDT Print View

Temptress! Get thee (and thy chair) behind me. I gotta enforce some discipline on myself at some point. No chair!

(At least, not until I give in, and start carrying one.)

Someone must have examined the art of successful ground-sitting?

Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
Re: Technique: How do you Sit on the Ground (Comfortably)? on 06/03/2014 12:18:15 MDT Print View

I either sit cross-legged or I sit with my legs open but out in front of me or I pull them up to my chest. The best is when I find the perfect rock to lean my back against.

d k
(dkramalc) - MLife
Re: Discipline on 06/03/2014 12:27:04 MDT Print View

I think there was a thread on something like this a long while back...

http://www.instructables.com/id/Seatless-strap-chair/

Bob Shaver
(rshaver) - F

Locale: West
the reason I go light weight on 06/03/2014 14:12:19 MDT Print View

I go light weight partly so I can carry a few extras, like a camp chair. I've been using this one for a year now, and my 64 year old bones think its worth a pound and a half.

Flexlite chair

Pics and review of this chair here:

http://backpackingtechnology.com/backpacking-trips/backpacking-chair-rei-flexlite-chair/

Edited by rshaver on 06/03/2014 14:15:33 MDT.

Gary Dunckel
(Zia-Grill-Guy) - MLife

Locale: Boulder
Sit well or go home on 06/03/2014 14:21:53 MDT Print View

The best is when I find the perfect tree to lean my back against, while sitting on my 17 oz. cuben stool (Yellowstone is mainly a lodgepole forest, and those small-diameter logs are only good for hobbits and small kids). Sooo....BYO stool, if I plan to spend 2+ nights at one spot.

Cache stool

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Discipline on 06/03/2014 14:29:39 MDT Print View

Delmar, not sure if you are looking for hardware or yoga, but if you have pad there are thingies you can buy or make that fold them into into a passable chair, such as:

http://www.basegear.com/thermarest-trekker-chair-kit-2012.html?gclid=CjkKEQjw5LWcBRCeh8uUlqqluN4BEiQAfr64cH5-zRXKTyze7Ns_eB713_rkzlcILEiIy-SK8RksogPw_wcB

So technically not actually a chair, and multi-use, so a loop hole?

Edited by millonas on 06/03/2014 14:33:14 MDT.

Alex H
(abhitt) - MLife

Locale: southern appalachians or desert SW
Yep, a chair on 06/03/2014 14:34:57 MDT Print View

I rarely find a rock or log or tree in the best location to take in the view. I am of the Colin Fletcher recline with legs in the sleeping bag while cooking, reading,viewing, etc. school. The thermarest chair kit (6 to 10oz. depending on model)is worth every ounce to me, especially in the desert.

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Speaking of Colin Fletcher on 06/03/2014 14:50:03 MDT Print View

f

Plus he has a great way of turning his external frame into a seat with his staff. Nick Gatel shows how here:

http://popupbackpacker.com/backpacking/trip-reports/a-nostalgic-hike-with-chuckawalla-bill/

I tried to do that after reading The Complete Walker III using trekking poles and a ULA pack - not so good.

Delmar O'Donnell
(Bolster)

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
More Temptations on 06/03/2014 16:17:34 MDT Print View

All these chair temptations. I can feel my resolve weakening, as the urge to sit becomes overwhelming.

> http://www.instructables.com/id/Seatless-strap-chair/

(Or for $38, the Vitra Chairless)

d k, you genius, thank you for this link. I have two 40" length 1" straps with fastex buckles, so I was able to try this by connecting them together. It appears you need at least 2 yards of webbing for this strap "chair" to go around knees and back. It really puts a lot of support right in the lumbar region where I need it. I sat happily on the ground a long time with this.

This strap "chair" also allows me to relocate quickly, which is important, since I often birdwatch while sitting. The interesting birds always show up behind you.

The two straps together are 2.4 oz, not bad. One can be worn as a belt. Coupled with my CC foam pack frame/sit pad (1.4 oz) this may make a comfy dual-use sitting rig. Not counting dual usage as belt and pack frame, this approach would add just 1.2 oz of extra carry to the pack for the single extra strap.

Very happy with all the suggestions so far. Thanks, BPL.

PS: Here's a photo of me with my new strap chair. Notice the large smile on my face.

strap chair

Edited by Bolster on 06/03/2014 17:11:10 MDT.

d k
(dkramalc) - MLife
Re: More Temptations on 06/03/2014 17:15:11 MDT Print View

Happy to help! I like the idea of using the sit pad with it.

You look pretty happy in that picture ;-) Though maybe you should get out of the sun; you're looking older by the minute...

Franco Darioli
(Franco) - M

Locale: Melbourne
Technique: How do you Sit on the Ground (Comfortably)? on 06/03/2014 17:41:48 MDT Print View

One way :
ULA seat
this is the ULA Circuit but should work with most packs.
The pack is upside down so that I can sit on the rolltop to keep the pack from sliding back. Easier again if your pack has a lid.
The pole tips are held in place by the pole loops.
(if you need you can dig a small "pocket" under the pole handles)
BTW, I have never done that in the bush , I just read the thread and thought that it can't be all that difficult , so i shoved something in my pack , collected the sticks and went outside and set it up.
Another 5 minutes I will never get back.
This is what I do in reality :
Sitting

Edited by Franco on 06/03/2014 18:21:26 MDT.

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Technique: How do you Sit on the Ground (Comfortably)? on 06/03/2014 17:46:40 MDT Print View

Oh, nice! I have to re-try that.

I noticed if I put my bear can at the bottom of my Kalais the pack stands up by itself. Maybe when the can is more or less full I can use it (er, the pack) as a seat back, or maybe even rock back a bit.

Edited by millonas on 06/03/2014 17:49:14 MDT.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: Technique: How do you Sit on the Ground (Comfortably)? on 06/03/2014 18:30:23 MDT Print View

It depends on which way the bear canister goes into the pack. For some, the canister goes in with its axis vertical, and that would leave a flat place on the bottom. For some, the canister goes in with its axis horizontal (side to side). That leaves a long side on the bottom. For others, the axis is horizontal (front to back), and that also leaves a long side on the bottom. Because all bear canisters and all packs are different, you have to experiment to find out what works as a back rest.

--B.G.--

Richard Cullip
(RichardCullip) - M

Locale: San Diego County
Re: More Temptations on 06/03/2014 18:38:12 MDT Print View

Delmar - I saw this comfy chair option over on High Sierra Topix Comfy Chair Option

Lawn Chair Option

Lawn Chair Option 2