Have you ever been told that you need to stand up for yourself? Well this is very true in more ways than one! You need to stand up for your health! We are built to be upright and our bodies and cardiovascular system work much more efficiently that way.
Approximately 60 per cent of Australian adults do less than the recommended 30 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity each day, so the less sitting or lying down you do during the day, the better your chances are for living a healthy life.
During our work days, or lengthy study sessions, we end up sitting for prolonged periods of time at our desks without actually realising the harm we are causing to our bodies – both mentally and physically. Problems include back and neck pain, headaches, eye strain and a heightened stress response.
- Back and Hips
If you don’t use an ergonomically designed chair or workstation your posture is likely to be compromised, leading to pain and stiffness. Excessive sitting can also cause your hip flexor muscles to shorten and possibly result in hip problems.
- Varicose veins
Sitting for long periods can lead to varicose veins or spider veins (a lesser version of varicose veins). This is because sitting causes blood to pool in your legs.
- Deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
Sitting for too long could cause deep vein thrombosis (i.e. a blood clot that forms in the veins of your leg).
- Anxiety and depression
In addition to the effects of excessive sitting on physical health, the risk of anxiety and depression is also higher for those who lead a more sedentary lifestyle, mainly due to the fact that they are missing out on the positive effects of physical activity.
Now let’s look at some simple ways we can improve our level of movement during the day whilst at work or studying.
- Firstly, ensure your workstation or study area is set up correctly, to support good posture and remove unnecessary strain on your body.
- Take the stairs instead of the lift at work.
- Be more active at work. Regularly get up and move around, stretch and give your eyes a rest from the glare of the screen, Even set yourself an alarm to remind you to stand up and move!
- Move & Stretch – gently move your neck and roll your shoulders forwards and backwards standing or lying (at least ten repetitions). Gently stretch the areas that you feel are under pressure from your seated position, including your neck, chest, arm, back and hamstrings. Hold the stretch for at least 30 seconds, steadily breathing at the same time to help relieve pent up mental stress.
- Take your lunch break away from your desk and enjoy a short walk outside if you can.
- Get up and walk around when you’re on the phone.
- Stand up while you read emails or reports and walk over to talk to your colleagues instead of emailing them.
Keeping your body active and performing gentle stretches and movements every day will help you stay healthy and thriving.
As one of our Natural Therapies at Empowering Wellness Burleigh Heads, we offer Yoga Classes for all levels and capabilities. This class runs as part of the Gold Coast Active and Healthy program connecting us to our commitment to serve our Community.
Every Wednesday morning at 6 am at North Burleigh, Chilli –our practice manager- shares a Hatha Yoga 1 hour class prepared specially to help students become more aware of their bodies and movement needs, focusing on correct alignment and safe postures for all ages. Join us for a sunrise Yoga practice any Wednesday for only $ 3!
If you are suffering from pain, poor sleep, lack of energy or poor performance we can help you. Contact Burleigh Heads Chiropractic Centre at Empowering Wellness Clinic on the gold coast to make an appointment ph. 5535 9833, or click here to book online. We offer an educational approach that will empower and support you to learn ways of improving and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.