It is now said that sitting is the new smoking. Most people spend a majority of the day seated in the same or different chairs and positions. This is why it is so important to get out and be physically active.
Sitting puts enormous strain on not just your low back, but your hips, middle back, neck, legs and shoulders. Specifically, it creates actual shortening of the hip flexor muscles better known as the iliopsoas in the low back and hips, and weakening of the gluteal and low back musculature, which causes poor biomechanics and and can lead to instability and degenerative changes in the lumbar spine.
Click on this link to get a better picture of the effects of sitting on your body:
To vary your posture through the day, consider these options:
- Get a sit stand work station. See if your workplace offer these or supports you in getting one to install.
- Take stretching and brief 5 minute walking breaks every hour. Or, if this interrupts your work flow and you must sit for longer, then spend 20 minutes every few hours on your feet walking, stretching or just not sitting.
- Stand up in meetings. Whether they are live meetings, webinars or phone conferences, stand up. Consider a more progressive “walking meeting.”
- Spend time away from work being active. If you sit for most of your workday, one of the worst things you can do is go home and sit on the couch and watch television. Find an activity you look forward to doing, so you will be more inclined to continue it long-term.