We all sat down too much. At work, at lunchtime, when we read, when we watch series or movies, when we study, when we go to class, when we meet for a vermouth, when we drive... modern society spends more and more time sitting and the technology ties us more and more to our desks. Many of the processes that used to require scrolling are now within reach of a click.
This development is good for our comfort, but if we don't take responsibility, it can affect our health. Our body needs movement to stay healthy in the long term. According to the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work , around 80% of people who work in front of a computer screen every day suffer various health problems related to a sedentary lifestyle.
Sedentary disease refers to the inconveniences and dangers of spending long periods of sedentary time sitting almost daily and has plagued office workers since the 1960s. Health risks include:
- Weakening of the leg and buttock muscles, leading to increased risk of injury from falls or during exercise.
- Weight gain and increased risk of obesity.
- Poor health of the spine, which causes its premature degeneration
- Decreased mental well-being, more anxiety and depression.
- Increased risk of health problems such as cancer, heart disease, high blood pressure, and type 2 diabetes.
- Varicose veins, deep vein thrombosis and poor blood circulation.
- Neck pain and stiffness.
- Increased atrophy of the medial temporal lobe, which affects memory and brain function.
- Pain and stiffness in the middle and lower back as well as in the shoulders.
- Early death
That is why the need to add dynamism to our day is increasingly imminent, especially during working hours, which represent a third of it.
Here are some tips to add movement to your daily routines:
-Walk a little before starting work
If you go to the office you can park a little further from the door, so you can walk to your job both on the way there and back. If you work at home, you can go for a short walk before starting the day, it will also help you relax and organize your ideas.
-Use the stairs to go up and down
Whether at the office or at home, use the stairs every time you have to go out. Take the opportunity to move whenever you can. For example, you can raise them faster or two by two to give a different stimulus to the body.
-Do stretches several times a day
Listen to your body, there are people who accumulate more tension or discomfort in the neck, cervical, jaw, back... Identify your pain points and take care of them.
-Use a lift table
If you opt for a raise, stand up every 30 to 45 minutes. In this way you can give movement to the body without losing the rhythm of work.
Find your way, if every 30 minutes is too much for you, do it every 50 minutes. Combine standing periods with sitting periods, you can start doing 20-80 and add more standing moments until you reach a 50-50 ratio.
-Take advantage of changes in posture to move
Take advantage of these changes to move, go to the bathroom, get water or a coffee. Don't make it difficult for yourself. For example, if you want to force yourself to get up more times a day, don't work with a 2-liter bottle of water next to you. Use a glass or a small bottle that you have to refill every time you want to drink water.
-Plan your tasks on the move
Decide which tasks you are going to always carry out while on the move, such as walking whenever they call you, or whenever you have to think of ideas for a project; or stretch whenever you wait for the coffee maker to make your coffee or the microwave to heat the tupperware.
When you sit in the chair, try not to keep the same position all the time. Move your legs, your back, change position. In this way you keep your muscles active and irrigated, move your lymphatic system and release muscle tension.
-In short: move more!
Do you work at home? Put on your favorite song when you take a break and dance a little. Do some squats or any other exercise that feels good to you.
In the office? Go see that colleague you like from the apartment next door and ask him how the weekend was or always take a walk after eating.
It is about finding the balance between movement and comfort . A balance that allows us to maintain good health and, in turn, work with energy and motivation.