The you sit game (maybe you know it):
“No, you sit”
“There’s only one seat left, you should take it”…
Why are we competing to sit? Why is it so easy for us? Why is standing for long periods of time not relaxing? Chairs Are Not Your Friend!
When did standing become not a great thing to do. When was sitting before a 6 hour plane ride deemed the best thing to do. Am I wrong- we seek a way to “rest” whenever possible…
How About Standing Up For A While? How about training our minds and bodies to find standing relaxing? That might mean we have to do some more yoga, some mobility, some physical opening and conditioning. It might mean we examine how much we actually sit and are encouraged to sit. Maybe we craft a standing desk? Maybe we lie down for rest, instead of sitting, even that’s better?
Better yet, think about ways to walk while you work: Walk laps with your colleagues rather than gathering in a conference room for meetings. Position your work surface above a treadmill — with a computer screen and keyboard on a stand or a specialized treadmill-ready vertical desk — so that you can be in motion throughout the day.
The impact of movement — even leisurely movement — can be profound. For starters, you’ll burn more calories. This might lead to weight loss and increased energy.
Even better, the muscle activity needed for standing and other movement seems to trigger important processes related to the breakdown of fats and sugars within the body. When you sit, these processes stall — and your health risks increase. When you’re standing or actively moving, you kick the processes back into action.
The dangers of sitting:
Researchers have linked sitting for long periods of time with a number of health concerns, including obesity and metabolic syndrome — a cluster of conditions that includes increased blood pressure, high blood sugar, excess body fat around the waist and abnormal cholesterol levels.
Too much sitting also seems to increase the risk of death from cardiovascular disease and cancer.
One recent study compared adults who spent less than two hours a day in front of the TV or other screen-based entertainment with those who logged more than four hours a day of recreational screen time. Those with greater screen time had:
- A nearly 50 percent increased risk of death from any cause
- About a 125 percent increased risk of events associated with cardiovascular disease, such as chest pain (angina) or heart attack
The increased risk was separate from other traditional risk factors for cardiovascular disease, such as smoking or high blood pressure.
Sitting in front of the TV isn’t the only concern. Any extended sitting — such as behind a desk at work or behind the wheel — can be harmful. What’s more, spending a few hours a week at the gym or otherwise engaged in moderate or vigorous activity doesn’t seem to significantly offset the risk.
Rather, the solution seems to be less sitting and more conscious awareness, more moving overall.