The era of digitalism and technology is conquering our life styles at a rate, where we spend most hours in a day, sitting and heating up the chairs. Yes, there is nothing wrong in ‘sitting’ and giving your physique some rest, yet, what if you are not clipped to the chair in a way which does any good to your overall health?
That is where this term ‘good posture’ comes to the vista. It is critically important to know why you shouldn’t sit too long as well as why maintaining a good posture is highly salient in order to earn a healthy body frame.
What bad sitting posture can lead you to?
Bad sitting would not only cut several years off your life but also give rise to back and neck pain, rheumatic ailments like carpal tunnel syndrome and many more.
A recent study done by British Medical Journal has revealed that ‘reduction of the average time you spend sitting to less than three hours per day could increase your life expectancy by two years, which is a significant decrease from the 4.5 to 5 hours per day the average American now spends on a chair or sofa’. Making the matters more drastic, an analysis of 18 studies done world-wide showed that people who sit for the longest periods of time were twice as likely to have diabetes or heart disease, compared to those who sat the least . In addition sitting actually joins hands with smoking and obesity as an important risk factor for chronic ailments.
In Sri Lanka this situation might be worse due to the current pattern on which our competitive society relies-“The stylish chair-heating culture”
Excessive sitting slows down your metabolism
The link between bodily ailments and sitting was initially identified around 1950s, where researchers discovered that bus drivers in London were twice as likely to develop coronary artery diseases as their bus conductor colleagues.
Another research study carried out on Astronauts around 1970s, revealed that life in zero gravity was linked with fast bone and muscle loss with ageing.
Furthermore, as most professionals in the field suggest, sitting decelerates the rate of metabolism in your body, so the longer you sit, easier the bodily mechanisms shut down.
How to sit properly?
1.Support your back-It is necessary to keep your lower back stable as the first step. A properly adjusted chair will lower the strain on your back so try your best to choose an easily adjustable chair in which you can change height, back position and tilt, when required.
2.Rest your knees slightly lower than the hips and use a foot-rest if needed.
3.Rest your feet on the floor. Make sure not to cross your legs as it can result in posture-related ailments in most of the individuals.
4.Maintain your chin behind the chest bone because when chin is too far ahead, you will unintentionally make your hip flexors, remain in an abnormal manner (short), thus resulting in an increased compression and degeneration of joints.
TIP: Practice the lengthening of your hip flexors without hyperextending your spine by slowly raising the distance between your rib cage and pelvis while keeping the chin pulled in and down towards the throat.
5.Place your screen at the eye level when using laptops and other electronic devices where your elbows stay by the side of your body with arm creating an L-shape at the elbow joint. This will help to protect your wrists and forearms from repetitive strain injuries.
6.Make sure to take regular breaks while sitting, preferably every 20-30 minutes.
Tips to bring down the sitting time during a day:
Stand on the train or bus
Take stairs and walk up on escalators
Set a reminder to get up every 30 minutes while working
Place a laptop on a box such that you can work while standing as if you are enjoying a cocktail.
Stand or walk around while on the phone
Make it a habit to enjoy a ‘Walk break’ every time you take coffee or tea in between work shifts.
Walk to a co-worker’s desk instead of messaging or calling
Spare some regular TV time for an active recreation or hobby.
Step on earth and feel the comfort
Stepping down from your seats and touching the ground with barefoot do miracles according to science. In fact, the production of beneficial electrophysiological changes following that spur of touch between your skin and earth inevitably protect you from potentially disruptive electromagnetic fields around.
Additionally, it will boost the immunity as well as provide your body with a sound anti-inflammatory effect.
So why not spice up your routine with those ‘healthy good posture’ tips-which would not only keep you fit but also help you to say BYE to this very popular yet boring ‘ Chair heating life style’.