Modeling in General
General discussions about modeling topics.
Leg pain
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England - North West, United Kingdom
Member Since: April 20, 2004
entire network: 2,439 Posts
KitMaker Network: 283 Posts
Posted: Tuesday, February 19, 2019 - 06:51 PM UTC
I have suffered from leg pain for sitting on my chair for about 6 years,the back of my top legs start to ache after about half hour and I need to take a break for an hour,so I can only manage half hour sessions on my models.
Been to the doctors but they just told me to take anti inflammatory tablets but don't work.
Anyone else suffer from this?
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Queensland, Australia
Member Since: April 23, 2015
entire network: 4,648 Posts
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Posted: Tuesday, February 19, 2019 - 07:51 PM UTC
is it with every chair? Do you have the same problem with the Laz-y-Boy in front of the TV? Have you tried stretching first your calves, and then your hamstrings?

I learned a lot about pain relief when my wife dragged me to yoga. I don't do yoga anymore, but I still use some of the stretches I learned.

Best of luck!


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Stockholm, Sweden
Member Since: November 29, 2006
entire network: 6,693 Posts
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Posted: Tuesday, February 19, 2019 - 08:00 PM UTC
Could you have an alternative work position where the work surface is high enough so that you can stand up when working?
Have you tried a work chair where the seat surface can be tilted? By having it loose you can rock back and forth and constantly change the pressure points and the angle between your back and legs.

If the sitting position is wrong you could be putting too much weight on your "rear end" (seat of chair is too low) or have the front edge of the chair cutting into the back side of the leg just above the knees (seat of chair is too high).

/ Robin
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England - North West, United Kingdom
Member Since: April 20, 2004
entire network: 2,439 Posts
KitMaker Network: 283 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, February 20, 2019 - 04:04 AM UTC
I use a computer chair at the moment but I might get a more suitable chair like an orthopaedic chair that might help.
Also I hear a foot rest helps with posture,am sure it's something to do with my sciatic nerve.

Thanks for replies
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Washington, United States
Member Since: March 11, 2016
entire network: 1,792 Posts
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Posted: Thursday, February 21, 2019 - 06:06 AM UTC
I have severe sciatica down both legs thanks to a shattered vertebrae and a handful of ruptured disks I suffered while in the Army and I know how uncomfortable prolonged sitting at the model desk can be. I don't sit reclined but with my back fairly erect and sit all the way back in my chair so the whole length of my butt and thigh is supported by the chair seat and the edge of the seat touches the back of my knees. The height is set so my feet rest flat on the floor. This keeps me from having pressure points on the backs of my thighs and butt. I move my legs a lot without really thinking about it, it helps keeps my muscles from cramping and spasming. I can sit for a couple of hours non stop with out too much discomfort but I have to get up to take a break and walk around for a few minutes. And try not to sit hunched over. This puts strain on your low back and aggravates your sciatic nerves. Believe it or not it is your abdominal muscles that help support your back. I didn't know I had a back injury and the Army docs never xrayed it they just sent me to 'back stabilization class' and showed me exercises to strengthen my abs. I went from doing 60-70 sit ups in 2 minutes to cranking out 200 in 2 minutes. When they cat scanned my back in Korea following a knee injury the doctor was ready to evac me to Hawaii but I told him needed an oversea tour ribbon to get my E6 even tho I served a 2 year tour in Berlin I got the Army Of Occupation ribbon. So he let me stay as long as I gave up patrols, helmets and body armor, he got no argument from me.
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Kentucky, United States
Member Since: April 13, 2011
entire network: 9,465 Posts
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Posted: Thursday, February 21, 2019 - 07:57 AM UTC
I was having a lot of back pain working long hours at the hobby bench. Raised the bench and switched to working standing up. Problem solved.

Worked 20 years in the office at a stand up desk, sometimes using a bar stood for a seat. Now retired. Very glad I switched back to the stand up arrangement at the home work bench!
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North Carolina, United States
Member Since: June 06, 2006
entire network: 4,691 Posts
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Posted: Thursday, February 21, 2019 - 08:48 AM UTC
I work standing up myself.
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Washington, United States
Member Since: March 15, 2009
entire network: 3,670 Posts
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Posted: Thursday, February 21, 2019 - 11:12 AM UTC
In another life, after I retired from the Army and then as a hobby Shop worker, I went to work for a company contracted to do work-related disability studies for the State Labor and Industries organization. Part of that job was helping fit workers into ergonomic chairs, and monitoring workers given ergonomic chairs and sit-stand desks at their place of employment. You seem to be describing a muscle related problem of the upper legs more than true sciatica (but I wouldn't rule out mild sciatica) Sciatica affects the lower back, sacroiliac, buttocks, hips and legs, more than the muscles on the upper legs. If you have the wrong chair position, upper leg muscles compensate for the problem by remaining tensed, causing cramping and pain in the muscles over time. Generally,(there are exceptions) you can feel the impact of sciatica rather quickly, in other places, regardless of how you sit or what chair you sit in, as sciatica impacts the nerves of your lower back. In addressing upper leg muscle pain, your torso should rest on your buttocks and lower back, while relaxing the muscles of your upper legs. Upper legs should remain roughly parallel to the floor, not sloping on an angle upward or downward, with the heels of the feet placed straight down under the knees, NOT tucked under the chair with your toes "arched" in a curl. If the nature of the pain is a "radiating" pain originating in your lower back and down through your buttocks, it could be sciatica. It also may not go away completely if you stand up with sciatica, in fact you may have trouble standing straight with sciatica. But if pain is confined to just the upper part of the leg muscle, it's more likely muscle related based on posture, or the chair you are sitting in. In looking for solutions, I'd experiment with a quality (which means expensive) ergonomic chair. You can get a good "comfortable" chair at an office supply store for about $400+. Or you can go to a medical supply store which sells ergonomic chairs and get an excellent one for about $600+. Good ergonomic chairs have adjustable lumbars, elevation, armrests, swivel, tilt, and supportive cushioning. Don't be fooled by office supply stores selling "ergonomic" chairs--they really don't know much about true "ergonomics" and most chairs marketed that way are usually just overstuffed swivel chairs. I've only found one quality chair in the States at Office Depot that could be called a true "ergonomic" chair, and it sells for about $699 (iComfort Workpro), but you can find it cheaper on sale sometimes. If you have real back problems, I recommend visiting a medical supply store that sells ergonomic chairs. If you can't afford a new ergonomic chair (seems like a tremendous expense for just model building) check with your Doc, and see if medical insurance might cover it. Short of a chair, you might try one of the new silicon "egg crate" cushions, which may relieve pressure in the buttocks and lower back-- a good one here in the States runs about $70, but I'd stay away from cheap "portable stadium seat" versions, which usually don't provide enough cushioning (the business I worked at never recommended "memory foam" cushions either--eventually they will collapse, and don't provide enough support). A sit-stand desk is also an option as others have said-- one that adjusts to a comfortable height. The best are motorized and will adjust at the touch of a button (but are also expensive). I would not rule out medications either. You should speak frankly to your doctor about your issues--You never mentioned your age, but at my advanced age, I take medication daily for arthritis pain, which does a fair job of helping my arthritis related issues (and helps my back and neck when sitting in a chair). Depending on your age, nothing really completely blocks arthritis pain, it just makes it more manageable. Joint medications also won't help if its a musculature issue rather than joint problem (it sounds like your doc has prescribed these anti-inflamatory drugs). Another factor is weight-- since I retired in 2006 and became more sedentary, my weight crept up to as much as 260lbs (I'm 6'3"). I found losing weight increased my ability to sit and work for longer periods (and aided with the arthritis), and I'm now on the downside, heading for 230-- it's made a lot of difference, instead of eating, now I build models! Hope this helps.
VR, Russ