Five Ways to Get Moving at Work

It’s all about micro-movements.

standing desk wellness

Micro-movements are incremental movements you can make throughout the day that can benefit your overall health. Think of how many times you could add to your day by taking the stairs instead of the elevator, or parking a little farther from the office. These simple micro-movements contribute to everyday activity, combating the sedentary lifestyle that comes with office work.

The Science of Micro-movements

NEAT, or non-exercise activity thermogenesis, suggests that it takes energy to move even the smallest muscle. Polly de Mille, RN, an exercise physiologist with the Women’s Sports Medicine Center at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City gives an example: “you burn about 1.5 calories per minute just lying still while your body performs its most basic functions.” Go from lying down to sitting in a chair and answering email, and you’ll burn 25 percent more calories.” 1 Adding micro-movements to your nine-to-five routine makes the calorie-burning process a day-long event.

Micro-Movement Activities You Can Perform at Work

  1. Stand More While You Work

Regular transitions from sitting to standing and back again maintains flexibility and improves circulation. On average standing can increase your heart rate by about 10 beats per minute higher than sitting and that makes a difference of about 0.7 of a calorie per minute. That burns up to about 50 calories an hour. If you stand for three hours a day for five days that’s around 750 calories! Sit-stand workstations help make standing a part of your daily routine. Find a sit-stand solution that fits your work space.

  1. Workout at Your Desk

Simple exercises you perform at your desk can burn calories, increase flexibility and improve well-being. Turning your workstation into a workout is an easy, no-sweat approach to exercise.

  • Lean back and lift your feet with legs straight, then bend your knees toward your chest, then straighten again. Do three sets of 20 reps and burn up to 75 calories.
  • Working your stomach muscles at your desk. Simply clench your stomach muscles for about 8 seconds Two sets of this activity for 8 reps will burn 100 calories.
  • See the top five deskercising activities.
  1. Take Walk Breaks

A study by the International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition found that frequent, brief walking breaks were more effective at improving well-being than a single, longer walk before work. Just five-minute walks throughout the workday can lift your mood, reduce lethargy and improve overall health.

  1. It’s Okay to Fidget

Fidgeting was once frowned upon, but no more. Tapping a foot, wiggling in your office chair may seem odd, but Iowa State University researchers found that those who frequently fidgeted, were burning an additional 300 calories per day compared to those who remained seated and still.

  1. Take Time to Stretch

Frequent stretching keeps a proper blood and nutrient supply to the working muscles and tissues. Taking a stretch breaks prevents fatigue and discomfort and reduces stress.

Put Your Activity on Schedule

If you need reminders to move, set an alarm on your phone or on your computer. Five minutes every 30 minutes using any of the activities mentioned is an easy way to get moving this spring.

 

  1. https://www.everydayhealth.com/fitness/neat-exercises-for-couch-potatoes.aspx

Are You Less Active Than Your Grandpa? You might be if you work in an office.

standing desks keep you young

We think of our grandparents to be at a stage of life where a sedentary afternoon spent sitting down is understandable and acceptable. Yet with the growth of digital technology at the workplace, sitting still for long hours is no longer reserved for the elderly.

Recent research from Edinburgh shows that many desk jobs lead office workers to spend up to thirty minutes more sitting down each day than members of our  retired population. That means most of us with desk-bound careers are more sedentary than those over 75.

The study revealed that middle-age men especially vulnerable to senior-level immobility, spending close to half an hour longer in their desk chairs every day of the work week. Working women under 45 are not far behind their male cohorts, spending only six minutes less than seniors sitting away the work day.

Don’t Let Your Body Take an Early Retirement

Take short, active breaks. Go for a walk. That pedometer app on your smartphone comes in handy for helping you realize how little you move. Use it to motivate extra steps throughout the day.

Engage with a standing desk workstation all day long. Standing up gets the blood flowing and keeps the body stimulated. When you feel that two PM slump coming on after lunch, stand up and work. The body intuitively associates stillness with sleep. Standing up with a sit-stand desk prevents you from nodding off like grandpa.

Stretch, bend, and move in place. You don’t have to run a marathon around the office to stay active. Use micro-movements like stretching exercises to stay flexible and keep feeling productive.

 

New Government-Backed Rating System Promotes Sit-Stand Desks for Healthier Workplaces

Developed by the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) and the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Fitwel, a new workplace design standard seeks to improve office health and productivity through improvements in design and policy. The government certification analyzes and assesses facilities designed for work for well-being and health benefits including indoor air quality, well-being enhancements for employees, such as implementing sit stand workstations,  and even evaluating the overall design of the building itself. Fitwel will be used as a standard for new federal government construction projects.

The Reason for the Sit Stand Focus: Office Workers Spend 5 Hours a Day at Their Desks

New evidence shows that alternating between standing and sitting at your desk throughout the work day improves circulation and energy.  The design of the Lotus Sit-Stand allows for easier transition from sitting to standing positions.

Lotus Sit Stand Workstation  sit

In a recent poll by American City & County, 53% of government office workers agreed that standing desks boost productivity.

How Experts View the Value of Sit Stand Desks

Workplace Trends expert Jonathan Webb sees sit-stand technology as a practical and healthy part of the new standard.  “The cost of sit-stand desks continues to drop as the product becomes more popular worldwide. The cost delta between sit-stand and static desks has dropped over 50 percent in recent years. Secondly, organizations see the benefits of allowing workers the ability to sit and stand throughout the day. For one, keeping knowledge workers at their most productive place – their computer – makes for a more productive employee. In addition, there are significant health benefits to altering postures throughout the day, including improved metabolism and heart rates, and reduced blood pressure.” Fitwel hopes to provide a definitive outline of the essential characteristics of a healthy workplace more clearly for business owners, human resource departments and facility managers.

Learn more about the Fitwel standard.

Sources: http://americancityandcounty.com/office-equipment/expert-expect-see-more-standing-desks-workplace-2017