HCF Fit and Well : HCF Fit and Well Winter 2015
Take a stand Have a break from sitting and get your health back on track at the same time. A t least a quarter of all Australians spend a minimum of eight hours a day sitting, with some people spending a whopping 11 hours a day on their behinds. Those hours are clocked up working at a desk job, watching television, spending time on the computer and commuting to and from work. In any case, it isn’t good for you. Even if you’re in the small proportion (38 per cent) of people who actually do the recommended amount of at least 150 minutes of exercise each week, you need to get out of your seat and move more. “Research has shown that even if you do get your daily dose of exercise, if you spend too much time sitting you won’t show up as well on some health markers for chronic disease than people who both exercise and reduce their sitting time,” explains exercise physiologist Professor Steve Selig, Chair in Clinical Exercise Science at Deakin University, Melbourne. Sitting for extended periods of time can increase your risk of heart disease, cancer and diabetes, developing deep vein thrombosis (DVT), your chances of weight gain, lead to poor posture, cause or worsen back pain, weaken muscles and reduce muscle tone. Get moving All of these risks can be reduced by taking regular breaks from sitting. “Frequent small amounts of movement can improve some blood markers of cardiovascular disease and diabetes, and may also reduce your chances of blood clotting,” says Prof Selig. He also says that a small amount of exercise can help clear some infammatory products from the body and reduce your risk of weight gain and chronic diseases. Research results published in the United States journal Preventing Chronic Disease showed when study participants included movement breaks in their day they reduced back, neck and shoulder pain and even boosted their mood. To reap the health benefts you need to get up once an hour for about three to fve minutes. Try setting an alarm on your phone or downloading an app to remind you. 5 ways to move 1. Swap sitting meetings for walking meetings at work, using your phone to record the meeting. Spend fve minutes at the end sitting and consolidating it all. 2. Engage in active travel, such as bike riding or walking to and from work or school, standing instead of sitting on public transport, and getting on and of a stop earlier so you have to walk farther to your destination. 3. Always take the stairs instead of a lift or escalator. 4. Get up during TV commercial breaks and go for a walk around the house. 5. Swap sedentary family time for active family time, such as going to the park instead of watching a video or playing hide and seek instead of playing a board game. “It’s not about just standing up next to your desk and stretching, you actually need to be moving,” says Prof Selig. He suggests walking up and down a fight of stairs a few times, walking the length of the offce a couple of times, in addition to printing to distant printers or getting a cuppa from a location distant from your desk.
HCF Fit and Well Summer 201415
HCF Fit and Well Summer 2015-16