By Shell on Feb. 29, 2020
If you're seated incorrectly, you're not just increasing your chances of aches, pains and fatigue, but putting yourself at risk of not being able to control your vehicle in an emergency. Even worse, the way you sit might prevent your car from protecting you in an accident.
So, how do ensure your driving position is correct? Here's what you need to focus on.
If your seat is positioned too far forward, you'll find it difficult to move your feet freely between the pedals. Alternatively, if you're seated too far back, you risk being unable to hit the brake with sufficient force or having your body 'submarine' beneath the seatbelt in a collision.
If your seat's fore/aft adjustment is correct, you'll be able to place your feet behind the pedals and touch the firewall (the vertical panel behind the pedals) with a slight bend in your knees. If you can't easily move your foot between the pedals in this position, slide the seat back a little.
Sitting too close to the steering wheel makes it difficult to twirl it as freely as you might need to in an emergency-swerve situation. If you're sitting too far away, meanwhile, you'll naturally lean in towards it – increasing back and shoulder fatigue – while using it to stabilise your body during cornering, again decreasing steering control.
To fine-tune this part of your driving position, rest your wrists on top of the steering wheel. If your arms are stretched as you do this, you're too far away. Alternatively, if your arms have more than a slight, comfortable bend, you're too close. Most cars allow you to get this right by adjusting the steering column telescopically. If you can't do that, use your seat's reclining or fore/aft adjustment.