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Dear Doctor

January 2016


Is it bad for my child to sit in the "W" position? (Both knees touching floor and feet out to the side)

- Albert - California (Parent)


There is a misunderstanding that sitting in the “W” position is bad for your child. This has never been proven in a published journal. It is very common for some young kids, especially toddlers, to sit in the “W” position. This is for several reasons:
1. Children’s hip joints are looser than an adult’s, so they can rotate their hips to point inward.
2. The bones in the thigh and leg of young children often have a “twist” to them. The knee will point slightly inward and the foot may also point slightly inward.

As your child grows, his/her hip flexibility will decrease (the joint will “tighten up”), the bones will untwist, and he or she will likely lose the ability to sit in a “W” shape. This usually happens by the time your child starts elementary school. Some children always remain flexible - if this is your child, he/she may become a gymnast or contortionist in the future!!

- Albert - California (Parent)