Sitting and Its Effects on Our Health
I often see exercisers spend much of their time performing physical movement while seated or laying down on exercise machines. When coupled with the degree of time spent daily in seated positions, the question arises as to the value of this practice. Our bodies need to be stimulated in diverse ranges and positions. Posture, circulation, stability, bone and muscle are all adversely affected by being in seated positions for extended periods. Why exercise that way?
The answer is typically in the type of movement we believe is congruent with “enough” exercise, that is, done with the mindset of being as quick and comfortable as possible. While machines can play an important role in exercise performance, we should use our bodies as the efficient machines they are intended to be. When exercising take every opportunity to minimize reliance on artificial structure, i.e. weight machines that attempt to isolate a muscle group, and use equipment that allows for free and functional movement. Examples include Stability Balls, Resistance Tubing, and your own body weight. You will move and feel better in your daily life and look great too!
I have provided a chart taken from an article by Scott Sonnon, lifestyle and fitness coach, (http://www.rmaxinternational.com/om/home.php) that shows many of the adverse effects we can incur from sitting for hours every day. Based on this material you could make the argument that most of our modern medical challenges could be prevent from reducing this common practice. Take an objective look at how you spend your day and change whatever possible to mitigate this effect.