Don’t Just Sit There!

By now we’ve all heard the studies: sitting is killing us.  45% of women and 37% of men spend less than 30 minutes per day on their feet while at work.  Out of all the people who responded to a British survey about the matter, 80% of people thought that they sat too much.

So, you probably know the risks of being sedentary: hypertension, diabetes, weight gain, some cancers.  Even knowing the risks, it turns out, doesn’t make most people get up and move.  So how about let’s focus on the benefits, eh?

Everyone has periods of low energy on the job, but rather than reaching for coffee or Red Bull, but studies have shown that even short exercise like a walk around the building can be more effective (not to mention healthier) than caffeine for energizing you.

Need to come up with an idea for a presentation?  A Stanford study found that going for a walk (especially outside) can boost creative output by 60%.

So get up and get your blood (and your ideas) flowing.  Here are some quick exercises you can do on the job for better health and performance:
Chair squats: keeping your spine straight, hands either on your hips or out in front of you, sit on a chair (a kitchen-type chair is best) and stand back up without using your hands. 3 sets of 6 to 10 of these.
Lunges: 3 sets of 6 to 10.
Balance: hold one leg up for 20 seconds each leg.
March in place: 3 times for 60 seconds.
To develop even better balance, try the previous two items with your eyes closed.
Arm circles: 10 seconds forward, 10 backward, 3 times.
Stretch your hand by pulling back on your fingers one by one.  This will prevent carpal tunnel and trigger-finger repetitive motion injuries.
Walk forwards, backward, and sideways back and forth to create balance in your legs and prevent injury.
Use tubing for back pulls–anchor the tubing around a door handle, and hold on to the grips.  Standing with feet shoulder width apart, pull both elbows back in a rowing motion, pulling your shoulder bladed together.
This is just a start.  There are many small exercises that you can do to stay moving at the office.  Even a couple of minutes per hour is enough to see significant benefits.

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