By Arielle Sidrane
But the issue of remaining sedentary for prolonged periods of time and the negative effect this has on our overall health is certainly worth another discussion. For those of you who work in an office where you’re sitting all day, how do you ensure you’re getting enough activity?
In the past, experts thought that exercising 30 minutes per day would negate all of that sitting on the job. However, new research has shown that this may not be enough. Sigh.
According to inactivity researcher Marc Hamilton, “It was a huge oversight to ever think traditional forms of exercise, such as hopping on your treadmill for a few hours a week, can provide the specific antidote to spending 40 hours a week resting.” Uh-oh! It was even shown that prolonged sitting increases the long-term risk of illness or death.
Even knowing that, the thought of standing 40 hours a week is a bit much. But the idea does hold promise for our younger, more energetic counterparts: Children. According to an article in the Chicago Tribune, a study that tested standing desks in first grade classrooms found that heavier children (85th percentile weight-wise) burned 32% more calories when standing. Given the epidemic of childhood obesity, it’s certainly something to think about.
Even more interesting: Participating children had the option to sit or stand – but most students preferred standing! Co-author of the study, Monica Wendel, reveals “standing improved attention, on-task behavior, alertness and classroom engagement.”
What do you think? Would you try a standing desk? Would you welcome them in your kid’s classroom? Tell us in the comments below!