Many of us have no choice but to sit at a desk of most of the day. There are options to break up all the sitting, such as frequent breaks and using a standing desk, but even these adjustments aren’t enough to undo the damage of sitting.
We know that a generally sedentary life leads to all sorts of illness as well as pain in the joints, back, and neck. As it turns out, sitting for long periods of time over the course of years is bad for your brain and heart, too. We weren’t meant to sit as much as many of us do—we were meant for movement.
A lot of sitting over time makes us lose muscle strength, tone, and range of motion. It also affects circulation, respiration, and digestion.
Even if you exercise regularly, sitting for long periods significantly shortens your life expectancy.
The Dangers of a Desk Job
Many people with desk jobs suffer from pain due to constricted muscles caused by poor posture and lack of movement. Posture while sitting is just as important as it is while standing. If you experience pain and stiffness, part of the problem may be your chair; if you can get one that’s ergonomic and fits your body, it’ll go a long way to help you to sit properly.
Sign up to get our free newsletter in your inbox daily.
Slouching, crossing legs, and keeping arms too high or too low all affect your sitting position. We learn to sit as infants and most babies will sit correctly with their back straight and shoulders back. However, as we get older, with larger spans of time spent sitting combined with poorly-designed furniture, we often resort to slouching. Watch the video below that illustrates what we’ve forgotten: the proper way to sit.
Watch the video below that illustrates what we’ve forgotten: the proper way to sit.
We’re not doomed to living with pain associated with long-term sitting. Starting today, you can use the five best back exercises below to loosen your muscles, improve posture, and increase your range of movement.