I’m sure we have all thought about our ‘bad habits’ we want to change to improve our health and happiness.. lose weight, exercise, quit smoking, meditate… but have you thought about your daily habit, your daily environment?
Are you addicted to your iPhone, does work mean you drive or fly long distances or do you sit at a desk for hours and hours a day? On average humans are sitting more than nine hours per day, incredibly this is more than the average time that humans are sleeping, 7.7 hours per day.
Unfortunately doing an hour of exercise most days of the week can not counteract 8 hours of sitting hunched over your computer every day. Here is just some of what the research shows about sitting.
- On average humans are sitting 9.3 hours per day, this is more than the average time that we are sleeping 7.7 hours per day
- Those who sit more than three hours per day are 64% more likely to die from heart disease than those that sit for less than 11 hours.
- Sitting more than six hours per day makes you 40% more likely to die within 15 years compare to someone who sits less than three. Even if you exercise outside of these six hours.
- People with the sedentary work have twice the rate of heart disease compared with people in standing jobs.
Most importantly, despite how much you exercise these risks of sitting are virtually unaffected! So let’s start with changing our perspectives and attitudes to sitting, rather than sitting for hours and hours a day and trying to fix it with an afternoon jog, as they say, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure“.
Here is what we would recommend:
- Identify those tasks today that you regularly do at work that do not require you to sit and choose to do those tasks daily in standing or even better, walking if it’s possible.
- Take every opportunity to walk over to communicate with your work colleagues face-to-face rather than sending an email to the person that is less than a minute walk away.
- There are a variety of programs that will set a reminder on your computer and will give you some simple exercises and stretches that you can perform every hour or two throughout the day. www.stretchclock.com www.fitnessbreak.com www.workrave.org
- Keep a theraband in your office draw and when you feel your neck or back becoming ache don’t ignore it! Stand up and complete a simple exercise in standing like a low road or neutral row, this will wake up the muscles of your back and shoulders to improve your posture while also giving you an opportunity get out of your chair and live longer happier and healthier!
Have a great week!
From the team at Arnhem Physiotherapy Services!