August 21, 2018
10 short exercises to do at your desk
Sitting in a chair all day, staring at a computer, is just not natural for us humans. It’s not only unnatural behaviour, it’s also bad for your health. Unsurprisingly, people who sit for more than 6 hours a day are prone to weight problems, cardio vascular disease and shorter lifespans.
You may know
this already; maybe you even go to the gym or exercise at home at night in an
effect to make up for it. Unfortunately, this won’t work.
popular belief, you can’t compensate for long hours spent in a chair just by
exercising for an hour a day. If you want to counter the potential lethal
effects of sitting, you must stand up and move regularly throughout the day.
This doesn’t need to be time-consuming or to distract you from your work; even
bending down to tie your shoes has a noticeable effect on your physiology.
When you sit,
your body adjusts to the new posture. Studies
show that just changing your posture from standing to sitting means:
Calories 65% more slowly – as
slow as 1 calorie per minute
Fat burning enzymes drop by 90%
Good cholesterol drops by 20%
Insulin effectiveness drops, making
you more prone to weight gain, diabetes and
Pressure is put on your lumbar
region and lower back pain sets in
solution? Simply move more. It’s a NEAT idea - Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis. NEAT includes the everyday activities that you do to
expend energy – activities that are NOT exercise. This includes making tea for
the team, standing at the photocopier, walking between meeting rooms, taking
the stairs and laughing at your colleague’s jokes. It also includes any
movement you do while sitting at your desk.
to take NEAT seriously, because tackling the office slump can reduce
muscular-skeletal disorders, one of the most common causes of sickness absence.
thinking organisations have adopted office
equipment to aid in this effort; standing or treadmill desks, chairs
that encourage rocking and gadgets that make your feet fidget.
But you don’t
need any special equipment to break up the monotony of six hours of sitting
still. This infographic features the 10 best exercises to keep your employees
moving. We recommend posting it on the walls and encouraging managers to lead
by example by doing these exercises with their teams.
It may be obvious but… it’s important to remember that whenever and wherever
you are exercising to check that any equipment used, including tables,
cupboards or chairs, are sturdy, safe and up to the task. The aim is for you to feel fresher and
healthier not to cause accident or injury.
That said, give it a go, you’ll be surprised how a small amount of movement
can make a big difference.