The Sitting Epidemic

Is sitting really that bad? We have some less-than-good news for you: Are you sitting down right now?

Sitting can be detrimental to your health. It’s vital to understand the signs of how sitting may be impacting your regular, daily life. Increased sitting time (sometimes called the Sitting Epidemic) is associated with increased risk for cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, anxiety, and some types of cancers. Some are even saying sitting is the new “smoking”—it can be that negatively impactful to your health.

 

Sitting: The Signs

Did you know? 86% of Americans sit all day at work. And that can quickly show up in your body. Do you feel:

  • Stagnant?
  • Any back pain?
  • Less joint mobility?
  • Stiff after a day at work?

 

This is your body trying to communicate to you that something is wrong, and you should get up off of your chair.

 

Minimize Symptoms from Prolonged Sitting

Throughout your day, it may be helpful to try different things to minimize symptoms from sitting too much.

 

GET ACTIVE

While any movement is better than none, it’s recommended to have 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous activity each week, spread throughout the week in more than 10-minute spurts. Go for a brisk walk on your lunch break. Hit the gym in the early morning or after work. Bike to work. Run to your favorite coffee shop on the weekend.

 

KEEP MOVING

It can be hard to stay active, but it’s made easier if you find a few workarounds. For example, you can invest in a standing desk. These became highly popular during the pandemic when everyone was working from home and barely moving around the house. (When meetings are always in the same place—you get even less activity in your day.) Adding a treadmill to your standing desk, or using an exercise ball as your chair are added things that can keep you going throughout the day. Sitting is fine—for a limited time.

 

MOVE DIFFERENTLY

In addition to these home office customizations, you can also add little moments of activity to your day to break up all the sitting.

  • Pace during phone calls—even the enjoyable ones
  • Put the ironing board by the TV and do a chore while watching your favorite shows or movies
  • Clean up one thing at a time to add in extra steps
  • Turn on a phone timer to remind you to turn off the TV and go do something active
  • Listen to audiobooks while you accomplish some active chores (e.g. washing dishes, weeding, vacuuming, folding laundry)
  • Park farther away from the front doors of your office or a store and take a little walk

 

If you work in an office, these little tricks might be helpful as well:

  • Stand while reading emails or reports
  • Put your trash can farther away from your desk so you can take a tiny walk to throw something away

 

Sitting Pain? Chiropractic Can Help

If you’re experiencing pain when you’re sitting, that’s abnormal. If you’re experiencing soreness, that’s also an issue. Please make an appointment with our chiropractic providers so we can help you find the root of the problem, and help you alleviate and manage the pain, soreness, and discomfort you’re experiencing.

 

ALL THE DETAILS

It’s best for both of us if you can give us all the details about why you’re in pain. This gives us the opportunity to advise you best and create a treatment plan and recommendations that will get you on the road to recovery.

 

MARCHING ORDERS

If you’re wondering what you should do between your appointments with the chiropractor, you can always ask for additional clarification. We’re happy to give you clarity around what prescribed exercises will be helpful, and what other modifications you should employ. It may also be helpful for you to keep an eye out for signs of either improvement or worsening and keep us updated on those so we can adjust your treatment plan as necessary.

 

MORE THAN ADJUSTMENTS

At our chiropractic office, we offer far more than adjustments. Many of these added services and tools can be helpful for those who are either sore or in pain from sitting. In your day-to-day, you can use items from us like salves and creams, resistance bands to build up strength, and you can use a prescription pillow and cushions. There are so many tools and other items that can help aid your recovery, and we’ll guide you toward the one(s) that will work best for you.

 

Bottom Line: Stop Sitting So Much

It’s time to kick the sedentary lifestyle—also known as the “sitting disease”. Get out of the chair. Go outside. Read while standing. Park farther away and walk there. Whatever you need to do to help improve your health and your life, do it! Let us know how we at Shephard Chiropractic Clinic can help you make and keep your goals in regards to staying active.

______________________

 OWEN ET AL. (2010). TOO MUCH SITTING: THE POPULATION-HEALTH SCIENCE OF SEDENTARY BEHAVIOR. EXERCISE AND SPORT SCIENCES REVIEW, 38(3), 105–113. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/pmc3404815/

 

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