Not many people are aware of how damaging sitting all day can be. It’ll slow down your metabolism, degenerate your muscles, cause various body pains, make your brain lose focus, and ultimately, cause organ damage. However, since many jobs today require sitting on a desk in front of a computer, sitting down all day cannot be avoided. Even if you exercise, the damage of sitting down is not counteracted because you spend more hours sitting down than working out. Once you sit down again, the degeneration of your muscles and organs will simply continue. Luckily, there are a few ways you can reduce and counteract the damage of sitting down. Although it is not as good as staying active throughout the day, it can still help prevent your body from getting overall unhealthy. Here are five tips for undoing the damage of sitting all day.
Tip #1: Stretch regularly.
Stretching may not seem like it does much for the benefit of your body but it can actually get your blood flowing when you’ve been inactive for too long. If you’re too busy to get out of your desk, then at least stretch regularly. Stretch your neck, arms, torso, and don’t forget your legs as well. If possible, stand up to stretch, not while you’re sitting down.
Tip #2: Keep changing your position.
If you stay in one position throughout the day, it can cause strains in various muscles of your body. For instance, if you crouch over your desk all day, the muscles in your back will become strained. To avoid this, change your position every now and then. Sit up straight or cross your legs. Lean on the back of your chair or crouch over the desk. Just keep switching your position.
Tip #3: Take the stairs.
Even if you work on a higher floor of the building, and it’s so much easier to just take elevator, don’t. Instead, take the stairs, especially if you know that a day of sitting down awaits you. Walking up and down the stairs will help stretch out and exercise your legs and glutes muscles. So when you go to work, or go out for lunch, always take the stairs.
Tip #4: Exercise.
There are certain exercises that target certain muscles of your body to help lessen the damage of sitting down all day. Of course, these exercises will not completely undo the damage but it can help you feel looser and it can relieve the strain on your body.
- Glute bridges. Lay down flat on your back but bend your knees and rest your feet flat on the floor. Elevate your hips and butt then lower them again, making one rep. Do three sets of ten reps. Once it gets easier, try adding weights.
- Leg swings. Leg swings will loosen up the muscles in your hamstrings, glutes, and hips. Simply swing your leg forward then backward as high as you can without losing comfort. Repeat 20 times before switching to the other leg. Afterwards, do the leg swings side to side.
- Grok squat. The grok squat will help relieve the muscles in your lower back, groin, hamstrings, Achilles tendons, and quads. It’s quite similar to the stance of the catcher in baseball. Simply plant your feet firmly on the ground then squat. Keep your back straight and hold the position for 30-60 seconds.
Tip #5: Take walk breaks.
If you have some time to spare, use it to get up and walk around the office. Maybe head to the lounge, to the water fountain, or to your friend’s cubicle—just get up on your feet every chance you get. This can help reduce the damage your body is getting from all those hours spent sitting down.