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Could Manspreading Be Good for Women?

This Orthopedic Surgeon Is Making the Case For Women to Sit More Like Men

There are plenty of examples of women being told to do things more like men in order to succeed in a male-dominated world — just consider the number of times you've heard women be told to be more confident, be less shrill, or apologize less. Why is it we never hear folks telling men that they should apologize more or perhaps be less confident?


It's normally women who are expected to change their behaviors to better align with the male default and status quo. So when I read the headline "Why Women Should Sit Like Men," in the Washington Post earlier this week, my initial reaction was to roll my eyes. Surely this would be the latest of several examples of well-intentioned authors telling women that if they'd just assert themselves a bit more, all their problems would be solved (with no mention of the societal norms that make it so hard for women to assert themselves in the first place).

Once I finally clicked the article and read the piece itself, I realized that my initial assumptions were wrong. The case for women sitting like men isn't about power poses — it's about joint health.

As the article explains:

  • Barbara Bergin, an orthopedic surgeon, started S.L.A.M (Sit Like a Man) after she started experiencing hip pain and realized her seated stance might be to blame
  • "Sit Like a Man is a call to action for women to change their sitting behavior to prevent pain."

As Bergin explains on her website, "Sitting with knees and legs together and/or ankles and legs crossed is a modern learned behavior... In the early 1900s, when skirt lengths crept up above the ankle it was considered more lady-like to have the ankles crossed. As skirt lengths rose, the practice turned into leg crossing."

So why does this learned behavior pose a threat to women's health? "Sitting with the legs on the floor and slightly apart," Bergin says, "takes the tension off of the iliotibial band, the longest tendon in the body, and the greater trochanter, the tendon that stretches across the big bone at the side of the hip." Sitting cross legged puts more tension on these tendons, which can contribute to hip and kneecap pain later in life.

And to be clear, Bergin's not actually advocating that women start "manspreading," just that women place their feet flat on the floor, with their legs at 11 and 1 in order to reduce tension.

So what do you think?

  • How do you like to sit? If you tend to cross your legs, will you give sitting "like a man" a try?
  • Are there other potentially harmful gendered social norms/learned behaviors that you think we should do away with? (High heels, anyone?)
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How These Companies Are Celebrating Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month

According to a recent study, anti-Asian hate crimes have risen 150% since the pandemic started. But these acts of violence are not new — they are part of a much larger history of anti-Asian racism and violence in the U.S.

That makes celebrating Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month (which was named a month-long celebration in May by Congress in 1992 "to coincide with two important milestones in Asian/Pacific American history: the arrival in the United States of the first Japanese immigrants on May 7, 1843 and contributions of Chinese workers to the building of the transcontinental railroad, completed May 10, 1869") this year all the more important.

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Webinars

Supporting Neurodiversity in the Workplace

Only 4% of companies that say they value diversity consider disabilities. Even fewer include learning and thinking differences.

While neurodiversity is a concept that is gaining more awareness, many employers have still not fully grasped the importance (and benefits) of understanding neurodiversity and how to effectively incorporate and retain neurodivergent individuals in their organizations.

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[VIDEO ▶️ ] Are You the Right Candidate for the Job? Tips From a Helm Recruiter

💎 Wondering how you can show up as the right candidate for the job?

📼 Press PLAY to hear some insight from a recruiter at Helm into what the right candidate for the job looks like in an interview. Alayna Sye, Helm's Senior Technical Recruiter, knows an applicant is going to be the right for the job usually after the first conversation. Find out exactly what will make you stand out, as well as the steps for the application process at Helm.

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30+ Ways Companies Are Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month 2021

Founded in 1989, Hispanic Heritage Month begins on September 15 and ends October 15. The four-week span over two calendar months may seem a bit odd, but it comes with good reason, as it covers independence anniversaries of several Latin American countries, as well as key celebrations in Hispanic and Latin communities. Apart from commemorating major holidays and historic milestones, this month honors the cultures and contributions of Hispanic and Latinx Americans.

We asked some of our partner companies what they're doing to honor and celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month at work this year, and we were inspired by the wide range of responses, from highlighting the impact that employees have in local communities to hosting fireside conversations on allyship to sharing performances and instruction of famous cultural dances.ot only are these companies honoring Hispanic Heritage Month, they're finding ways to spread positive change throughout the year. Here's what they're doing, in their own words:

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Webinars

The Workplace of the Future: How Companies Can Plan for The Ever-Changing

As vaccination numbers climb and some—though not all—of our collective paranoia begins to dissipate, businesses are starting to reopen. Employers face a key decision: how will they respond? Will they go back to the ways of life before COVID? Or will they adopt more permanently the flexibility and remote-first work necessitated by the pandemic?

As part of our Corporate Circles: Inclusive Conversation Series, join PowerToFly's Global Director of DEI Sienna Brown and Global DEI Strategist & Trainer Zara Chaudary on Friday, October 1st from 12pm to 1:30pm Eastern for an interactive roundtable as we discuss and share the tools and mindset needed to create the office of the future in a post-pandemic world.

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