According to Healthline, many people now are tethered to a desk for majority of time in a day. It’s becoming a serious health problem, which leads to spinal deformities, pinched nerves, weak postural muscles and others.
To counter this problem, it is suggested that everyone should do at least 30 minutes of exercise within the day, or engage in what doctors’ call “active sitting”.
What is active sitting?
International Journal of Exercise Science defined active sitting as allowing the body to stay dynamic while seated and may consist of using modified chairs or stability balls. Its goal is to engage some of your muscles like the back, abdominal, and leg while sitting in a chair.
So, instead of motionless sitting all day because of your work, active sitting lets you make minor movement to keep some of your muscle groups active.
What are the benefits of active sitting?
Due to the numerous health concerns arising from a sedentary behavior, there are different products created to promote an active workstation. These tools endorse benefits to stimulate the muscles in the body and to help people have a healthier work life.
Note that these benefits will vary to different people and how active are they in participating in any movement that each chair allows them to do.
It improves posture
Active sitting promotes effective posture, so once you start off slumped you won’t get anything out of it at all. According to Phillippe Til, L.A.-based trainer and martial arts expert, you need to start sitting on the edge of your chair with your spine straight and your shoulders squared. Also, open up your thigh-to-trunk angle so your feet will be directly under your shoulders. This type of sitting will definitely improve your posture. If done right it can counter long-term effects on your joints.
It stabilized blood flow and oxygen intake
Since active sitting encourages consistent muscle contraction, it forces blood through muscle tissue all over your body. It opens airways in your lungs and pump oxygenated blood cells inside. This also results to energized and rejuvenated mind and body.
If you’re following the good posture regimen and core strengthening, you can avoid back pains that are related to prolonged sitting. But you have to remember that it cannot replace actual exercise.
It burns calories
Active sitting is much better than motionless sitting in terms of burning calories. But it is not comparable to calories burned when exercising. Burning even few amount of calories tells the body that the metabolism is still working. It also signifies that energy is still being produce for the body and brain.
What are some active sitting options?
There are many ergonomic products that are designed to help you achieve a healthier work and life balance. These are strategically made to target specific muscles in the body and promotes specific benefit. Here are some sitting options for activating your lower body muscles.
A wobble stool is one of the best active sitting tools in the market. It requires you to actively use leg, hip, and core muscles in order to sit upright. FlexiSpot’s height adjustable wobble stool gives you rest from standing without going back down to a normal chair. This feature lets the user shift positions whenever they feel tired.
Kneeling chair will tilt the user slightly forward which produce great posture alignment. According to occupational therapist Meredith Chandler, this kind of chair is effective for lower back pain.
Using balance ball stimulates your core muscles like the deep pelvic, the abdominal, and the low back muscles. You can do variety of exercises when using the ball that challenges your balance and provide workout on the hips and legs.
Keep yourself moving and stay active while doing some siting exercises like moving your hips, legs, lifting your feet off the ground, squeezing your butt and others. Do your part while sitting at work to avoid serious health problems in the future.