Stand at Your Computer and Live Longer

Source

More dour by the hour...

How many hours a day do you sit?

  • Less than 3 hours
  • Between 3 to 6 hours
  • Between 6 to 9 hours
  • More than 9 hours per day
See results without voting

That's Right

Sitting 6+ hours per day will raise your chance of dying in the next 15 years by a massive 40%.

And research shows that not even exercise can offset the negative effects of prolonged and regular sitting.

The only solution — Sit less

Source

Length of sit governs size of seat

How overweight are you?

  • No excess here
  • I could lose a few pounds
  • Hmm, my weights a problem
  • I'm obese
See results without voting

No Surprise

Sitting makes us fat.

Over the past three decades, exercise rates have stayed about the same, but the time we spend sitting has increased by approximately 10%

Obesity has doubled

Keep reading to discover some alternatives to sitting

Source

It's time to take a stand when...

You suffer pain in which area most while sitting at your computer

  • Neck
  • Upper back
  • Lumber region
  • Lower back (Sciatica)
  • Upper or lower leg
  • Shoulder or arm pain
  • Hand or finger pain
See results without voting

Did you Know

Sitting can place stress on the neck, shoulders, lumber region and circulatory vessels.

Stress can lead to pain. Pain increases the production of cortisol in the body. Prolonged higher levels of cortisol in the bloodstream have negative effects;

  • Suppressed thyroid function
  • Decreased muscle tissue
  • Decreased bone density
  • Increased abdominal fat
  • Higher blood pressure
  • Lowered immunity

Source

Television Poll

How many hours do you watch on average per day

  • Less than one hour
  • One to two hours
  • two to three hours
  • three to four hours
  • More than four hours
See results without voting

The Heart of the Matter

Those who sit three hours or more per day watching TV are 64% more likely to die from heart disease.

Of those who sit in front of the TV three hours per day, those who exercise are just as overweight as those who don't

Every extra hour over the three spent watching TV, equates to an 11% higher death risk.

Source

Energising Exercise

What form of exercise appeals to you most

  • Going for a walk
  • Working in the garden
  • Work out at the gym
  • mini-tramp workout
  • Yoga routine
See results without voting

Get off your Butt

In the past it was recommended to do thirty minutes of exercise to offset the effect of sitting.

Now we know that's not the secret.

The secret: eliminate, minimise and interrupt sitting as much as possible.

Even standing increases calorie burn ten times that of sitting

Sitting at 135° puts less strain on your back than hunching forward or sitting straight
Sitting at 135° puts less strain on your back than hunching forward or sitting straight | Source

Get Proactive

What method of reducing your sitting time will you use?

  • I'm going to set up a standing workstation
  • I'm going to set up a 'get up and get active' hourly timer
  • I'm going to alternate between sitting and standing
  • Other (explain in the comments section)
See results without voting

Consider Alternatives

The best option, if possible, is to stand rather than sit. Advantages include:

  • Reduced stress on the body
  • Improved circulatory systems
  • Increased muscle mass and tone
  • Improved posture

If unable to stand, other options include:

  • Purchase an ergonomic seat
  • Every hour get active for 15 minutes
  • Alternate sitting and standing

Top Ergonomic Chairs

Source

The facts of the matter

Source

References

More by this Author


17 comments

billybuc profile image

billybuc 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

There is nothing more to add to this. Everything you say is right on of course. I started standing at the computer a couple months ago...not for the entire day of writing, but every little bit helps....right? Thanks for the gentle nudge in the right direction.


Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 2 years ago from southern USA

Yikes, I am in trouble. Thank you for this important hub here for one's health and long life. Of course I sit at the computer all day at work in the legal field and most days are so busy, I forget to get up and walk around, other than performing other tasks. Thankfully, I do not watch much television at all; however, I do come home and write in the evenings some of the days of the week. I am going to get up and get going!

Up and more and away


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 2 years ago from USA

They used to call it "secretary spread," but given all the time people spend sitting it's not just them. Dour by the hour is right. Voted up and more, sharing, and pinning to my "Health and Medical Interest" board. Well done!


Nancy Owens profile image

Nancy Owens 2 years ago from USA

Thank you for sharing this. One thing I do is to take short "work breaks" I get up and do some household chores for 10 minutes or so every hour or so.

I can do some things standing up, but other things I just can't seem to work right while I am standing.


Shyron E Shenko profile image

Shyron E Shenko 2 years ago

Very good advice, I do know that sitting broadens one, and I don't mean the mind.

I know that cortisol can cause Cushing Syndrom which my cousin has as I wrote about in "The Nightmare Before the Diagnosis of Cushings Syndrom.

This should help a lot of people.

Shyron


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean

Wow! You really make it sound serious--like it really is. I once had a supervisor who told us to stand up every two hours, even if we only did a little jig and sat down again. I have to remember this. Thank you.


stuff4kids profile image

stuff4kids 2 years ago

Fabulous! More people should know about this.

I do sit when working (writing) but I also have a table-top lectern which one of my sons made for me (he's a professional carpenter) so I can also stand and work.

So during the day, I alternate between sitting, always maintaining a good posture, and standing at the lectern where I can continue to write and read either by hand or on the laptop.

I couldn't stand all day at my age but I do find that my most creative output is achieved standing at the lectern rather than sitting at the desk-top. In fact, I realize now that I tend to study at the desk and get creative at the lectern.

I've voted this up and I'll be sharing it with my followers - as presumably they are all writers, too!

I recommend that folks who work in offices should lobby their employees with scientific evidence (there's plenty of it) to support some stand-up desk options in the workplace.

Great hub! x


RTalloni profile image

RTalloni 2 years ago from the short journey

I've been considering setting up a permanent stand up workstation for sometime, and have actually improvised the idea in the past. Now I know why. :) BTW, I've found sitting on an exercise ball is be really helpful for lower back issues.


Kathleen Odenthal profile image

Kathleen Odenthal 2 years ago from Bayonne, New Jersey

How can I sleep if I sit less than three hours a day? Sheesh! I try to stand as much as possible actually, Im just lazy.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton

what a helpful, hub.. useful advise ...


parrster profile image

parrster 2 years ago from Oz Author

@Billybuc ~ That's my pleasure. Of course, standing for too long has its own downsides, but none as dramatic as that of sitting for too long. I find alternating between standing and then sitting only when tired, and plenty of breaks to do a short activity in between works best. Thanks for commenting.

@Faithreaper ~ Yes, I'm pleased to see that of those taking the poll, most watch very little TV. But, as you say, being a writer sitting at a computer can be even worse than watching the box. Glad to hear I've inspired you to better health habits. God bless.

@FlourishAnyway ~ In fact many secretaries today are probably more aware of the importance of breaking up sitting stints than the rest of us. Thanks for the share and the comment.

@NancyOwens ~ Yes, standing isn't always the best or most comfortable. I like the semi-sit-stand stools that are available. Bit expensive but a good investment. I think using a break to get other essentials done is a wise use of time. thanks for commenting.

@Shyron ~ Yes, cortisol is a killer. I'll have to look up about Cushing Syndrome. Lacks for commenting

@MsDora ~ Little jigs are a great idea. I have a few yoga poses borrowed from my wife that i regularly do in between writing stints; very helpful.

@Stuff4kids ~ let the lobbying begin. I like your suggestion of two workstations, one for standing the other for sitting. Appreciate your encouragement, sharing and support.

@RTalloni ~ Yes, i think if people are going to choose to sit, they definitely need to invest in an ergonomic seat. Thanks for reading and contributing.

@Kathleen ~ I know the feeling, my legs tend to protest when standing too long. I tend to think alternating between seating and standing is best. Too much of either unhealthy, movement is the goal.

@Frank ~ Glad you enjoyed, hope it helps.


swilliams profile image

swilliams 2 years ago from Arizona

This is a very useful article, thanks for the helpful information! Voted up!


parrster profile image

parrster 2 years ago from Oz Author

@swiiliams ~ that's my pleasure. thanks for the vote. have a great day.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 2 years ago from Queensland Australia

Good hub. I have read a lot about this recently, and it seems the studies are quite spot on and can't b disputed. I generally sit for an hour or so, then go and do something else. Voted up.


parrster profile image

parrster 2 years ago from Oz Author

@Jodah~ Thanks. Yes, I had read a lot too, which is what inspired the hub. There have also been other studies on the risks of standing too long in one place. They are not as bad as sitting too long, but I think a solution that incorporates as much movement as possible is best.


Dee aka Nonna profile image

Dee aka Nonna 2 years ago

I think most of us know this and yet, we still sit and sit and sit...LOL I do make an effort to move around perodically. Your hub is reminding me that I actually show make even more of an effort. I kinda like living.


vespawoolf profile image

vespawoolf 2 years ago from Peru, South America

This definitely gives me food for thought! I started a sit down office job about a year ago. Although I'm still active and fit, it worries me that I have to sit so much. I'll definitely look into a standing work station. Thank you! This is useful and well written.

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