For some, sitting while they work is unavoidable. Many people earn a living by working a desk job. While manufactures have come up with ingenuitive products, such as standing desks, to help get us out of our chairs, it is virtually impossible to go 8-10 hours without taking a seat. Sure, exercise seems like the perfect way to get us moving, but I doubt a 10-minute walk or stretch session will make much of a difference compared to the amount of time we find ourselves sitting at work. The upside is not all is lost. In fact, there are ways you can optimize your health as a chronic sitter.
For one, you can move every 30 minutes. “But Christian didn’t you just finish saying how unlikely small amounts of movements are to make a significant impact?” Yes and no. It’s unlikely that you have 10-30 minutes to spare in your work day. I could be wrong. The fact that more and more people are working from home may mean people have more time for exercise; however, this is not the case for everyone.
Luckily, you don’t need a ton of free time to optimize your health for your place of business. All that is required is for you to move from a sitting to standing position once every 30 minutes. This could mean going from sitting at your desk to standing at your kitchen counter or you could try your hand at a standing desk.
If you have treadmill you can potentially optimize it as your workstation. I had a boss who converted his treadmill to a small workspace. This enabled him to walk all while answering phone calls, sending emails, creating proposals, and putting out fires on the home front.
While you are making the transition from sitting to standing, a few extra moments of full range motions can be beneficial to your mobility. Simple, short exercises can help reset your posture as well as reduce muscle tightness.
Another way to optimize your health is to pay attention to your workstation. Ideally, your chair retains a slight recline, your screen is slightly lower than eye level, and your keyboard remains in a horizontal position with your elbows.
So, is your health screwed if your job is of the sedentary variety? Not necessarily. If you’re sedentary for the bulk of your waking hours, extracurricular exercise is not enough to mitigate your risk of disease development. If you can’t find ways to reduce your sitting time, your best option is to set a reminder every 30 minutes so that you can get up and give yourself a break.
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Well + Good
Jul 7, 2020