The Standing Desk is NOT the solution to the bad health effects of sitting down too much (in the office)

January 11th, 2016   •   no comments   

I am not sure if you have seen all the hype about ‘sitting’ in the office and how it harms your health, EVEN if you do sports several times a week? Sitting down is ‘as bad as smoking’… and I believe the research: movement is key in living longer and have less health problems.

Standing desk

So what’s the solution?

The ’solution’ seemed to be -for a brief moment- the so-called standing desk, a desk mounted higher up, you stand in front of it, your monitor is at eye height, and under the desk you have a space for the keyboard; that way your shoulders relaxed and there’s more blood flow than when you are sitting, plus, your neck is positioned better. That means there’s less wear and tear on the neck vertebrae and the discs in between.

It turns out however that sitting less and standing more while you do office work is NOT the answer. Our bodies crave more or less continuous small movements. So it’s great if you manage 3 times 1 hour in the gym but the real health benefits will come to you if you add more movements during the day.

The real solution lies in what’s called micro movements.

  • Go out for a walk during lunch
  • Walk to your colleagues’ office,
  • Go by bike
  • Take the stairs

If you want to make movement more ‘evidence based’ then use apps on your smartphone. Most of them nowadays have sensors that track ‘active minutes’ or ‘number of steps’. If you just ADD that to the work you do in the gym (cardio, strength and functional training) then you will have much less wear and tear when you come into your 50s, and much less repair work by doctors :)

To quote the source, Dr Melvyn Hillsdon, from the University of Exeter: “Our study overturns current thinking on the health risks of sitting and indicates that the problem lies in the absence of movement rather than the time spent sitting itself.”

 

 

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