Stand Instead of Sit at Your Desk to Improve Health

By Chris Pichereau, Abshier House

A new trend in fitness encourages those who must be at their desks for long periods of time to stand instead of sit. Research has shown that sitting at your desk is bad for your health.

[Credit: ©iStockphoto.com/endopack]

Credit: ©iStockphoto.com/endopack

Sitting in a comfortable chair appears as the most normal way to get work done at a desk. Yet, sitting for long periods of time may be the single unhealthiest activity you engage in on a daily basis.

Long periods of sitting have a negative effect on your posture, mobility, joint health, and flexibility and can contribute to chronic back pain. The progressive tightening of the hip muscles by sitting causes strain on the lower back. When you sit all day and then move, the hips are compromised, and the spine tends to take over the hips’ job; the result is low back pain.

You might say, “But I go to the gym every day after work.” Unfortunately, that isn’t enough. A study recently published by Diabetologia, reports that sitting at a desk all day results in an increase in diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and death.

Most fitness experts recommend that you exercise for five minutes for every thirty minutes of sitting. There are exercises you can do to help alleviate the problems associated with sitting.

A fantastic way to approach an activity in which you have to remain in place is to alternate sitting with standing. In addition, having one foot or leg slightly raised helps take pressure away from your lower back and aids in circulation.

Sitting on a variety of surfaces also eases pressures. Yoga balls naturally help you to align your spine. Somewhat lower chairs and stools help your knees to be at different angles to take pressure off those joints.

[Credit: ©iStockphoto.com/dnberty]

Credit: ©iStockphoto.com/dnberty

With a little ingenuity and creativity, you can break the monotony of your tasks and maybe even be inspired in your work with new and creative solutions by changing your physical position.