When someone asks, “Are you sitting down for this?” it implies shocking news is about to be delivered. However, realizing the realities of a sedentary life can seem so appalling that you may want to leap out of your seat and stand for the rest of the day.
Are You Sitting Too Much?
How many hours do you sit per day? This includes time you spend sitting in the car, seated at your desk, and lounging on the couch at night. The number may surprise you. But even more alarming is the health consequences that derive from sitting too much.
According to an article in Time Magazine, the negative effects of sitting include (but are not limited to), “…blood pressure, cholesterol levels, blood sugar and [expanding] waist circumference….” These are serious medical concerns that can lead to heart disease, cancer and even death.
Sitting in Pain
Life threatening illnesses are one reason to stand more often, but another reason is this: sitting too much hurts. Have you experienced pain that comes from remaining in a seated position too long? When sitting for hours each day, the aches and pains of sitting too long become less of a nuisance and more of a way of life. Before long, sitting doesn’t only effect how we feel; it impacts how we look and carry ourselves, too.
Physiotherapist Marc Perry wrote an article for Business Insider about how to “Fix Hunchback Posture From Office Work.” In a related article on his personal blog he explains why we become hunchback after sitting too much.
Slouching in your office chair every day forces your chest muscles to tighten, which pulls your spine forward and internally rotates your shoulders. At the same time, your postural muscles in your upper back can loosen and weaken. The clinical term for this condition is Kyphosis.
How to Combat the Negative Effects of Sitting
Marc Perry is not the first physiotherapist to prescribe exercises that correct this condition. In fact, physiotherapists are well versed in treating people who are in pain because of their sedentary lifestyles. Aside from corrective exercises, a physiotherapist can help you develop an activity plan that fits your life and physical capabilities. Ultimately, teaming up with a physiotherapist may be the first step to living a more proactive, upstanding life.
Sitting has become a way of life, and with it comes pain and lifelong health problems. You can combat the sedentary lifestyle by teaming up with a physiotherapist. Beyond relieving aching pains and lowering your risk of serious disease, this will allow you to set and reach fitness goals in a safe environment.
Try and see. When you take a stand against sitting, you can change your life.