Why you shouldn’t recline your plane seat to sleep according to experts

RECLINING your seat is one way to make uncomfortable plane journeys more bearable.

However, experts have warned that passengers have been reclining their seat incorrectly this whole time if they want to sleep.

The best seat position for snoozing in economy is only 'slightly reclined' as it gives more support to your lower back

The best seat position for snoozing in economy is only ‘slightly reclined’ as it gives more support to your lower back

By putting the seat all the way back, it not only annoys other passengers, it can affect your body too.

Andrew Lawrence, president of the Chiropractors Association of Australia, says the best position for getting comfortable in economy is only “slightly reclined”.

Passengers should then put a cushion at the base of the spine to help maintain the lumbar curve and reduce pressure at the junction of lower back and pelvis.

Andrew told Escape: “As far as the skeleton is concerned, the pelvis – specifically the ischia or the hard bony things we sit on – and the area where the spine and pelvis meet are under the greatest pressure when we’re sitting upright and awake.

“But when we sleep the neck takes the biggest pressure.”

The chair incline isn’t the only game changer when it comes to getting rest on planes – it turns out that the vast majority of passengers are also wearing their travel pillows wrong too.

Dr Michael Breus – or The Sleep Doctor as he’s known to US television audiences — is one of the world’s leading sleep experts and a pro when it comes to sleeping in transit.

He told News.com.au that we should really be turning those pillows upside down.

He said: “And one thing I tell my clients is that if you have a U-shaped neck pillow, turn it around so the bottom of the U is under your chin.

“That’s because your head tends to bob which will wake you up, and by rotating the pillow it stops your head from bobbing.”

There are some people who put politeness ahead of their own comfort and are completely against reclining altogether, saying it is unfair on the passengers sat behind.

One anti-recliner wrote on Reddit: “There’s nothing worse than when you’re finally settled in your middle seat, between two huge people, and the person in front of you reclines their seat.

“You lose half your space and have to stare at the TV inches from your face.

“We’re all stuck together in a tin can, space is limited as it is. I don’t want the person in front of me reclining into my personal space.”

A flight attendant revealed to Sun Online Travel how to get the person in front of you to put their chair back up.

They said: “If there’s a medical reason why the person needs extra legroom, then we might be able to intervene.

“For example, if you tell us you’ve got a history of deep-vein thrombosis (DVT) then we can ask the person in front to put their seat up.

“If it’s a big issue, we may even move you to a seat at the front of the row, or maybe even upgrade you, so you have more room to stretch your legs, or so you won’t have to deal with a recliner.”

Meanwhile, this etiquette expert explained when passengers should and shouldn’t recline their seats.

And this passenger had their laptop destroyed by the person in front reclining their seat.

Reclining your seat could have negative effects on your health as well as annoying other passengers

Reclining your seat could have negative effects on your health as well as annoying other passengersCredit: Getty