As the owner of a chiropractic clinic in Stoke on Trent and Newcastle under Lyme, I see and treat many patients a week. Many of these patients are experiencing back pain and poor posture caused by spending too much time sitting down.
When I explain that the health issues they are experiencing are exacerbated by a sedentary lifestyle, they often reply “I have to sit down all day at work”. The key challenge that these patients face is finding ways to be more active while at work.
To help you avoid back problems associated with sitting down too often, this post will share the 8 best ways to stay active during the work day. If you require any more assistance, please contact Newcastle Chiropractic Clinic or City Chiropractic Clinic in Stoke.
#1 — Ride or walk to work
If you live within a short distance of your workplace, consider walking or riding a bike to work instead of driving or taking public transport. This single change can help you maintain a healthy weight, improve your posture, and keep your musculoskeletal system in top shape.
Obtaining some exercise in the morning and afternoon is also a great way to be more productive at work and decrease your stress levels. If you live too far away to walk or ride, consider parking further away from your workplace to enjoy a quick 5 to 10 minute walk before you start work.
#2 — Stay mobile while at work
You may be surprised by how many opportunities there are to move around more while at work. Here are a few ideas:
- Stand when you are taking phone calls
- If you are having a one-on-one meeting, do it while walking around the office.
- Instead of sending an email to a colleague, walk to their desk and talk to them.
- Ask your boss for a standing desk to avoid sitting.
#3 — Volunteer to get out of the office
When your boss is looking for a volunteer to pick up coffee or deliver a package, put your hand up. This will give you the opportunity to get away from your desk and grab a few minutes of additional exercise each day.
#4 — Exercise while at work
Many employers have discovered that allowing their staff to exercise during the workday reduces their stress levels, increases productivity levels and reduces the number of sick days that employees take. If your employer hasn’t realised this yet, bring some of the available research to their attention. A quick 10 minute stretching session or blast of cardio can help employees re-energise, become mentally alert, and boost their motivation levels. Some of the best exercises to incorporate into the workplace include:
Sitting down for long periods can cause additional strain on certain parts of the body while causing other parts to atrophy. Avoid this by regularly performing stretches throughout the day. The best approach is to set a timer which reminds you when it is time to stretch. There are many stretches which can be performed at your desk — check out this list to get started.
- Perform a quick cardio workout
Run up and down the stairs a couple of times, perform some squats or walk around your office building. This will get blood flowing and keep your joints moving. Performing a quick cardio workout before a meeting is particularly useful as it is mentally stimulating.
- Lift some weights
You can also use dumbbells and resistance bands while at your desk to increase muscular strength.
#5 — Have an active lunch
Make the most of your lunch break by getting active, Instead of sitting down in a restaurant or eating while hunched over in a cubicle, eat while on the move. Go for a walk to a local park and enjoy your lunch as you walk around.
#6 — Track your steps
One of the best ways to assess how active you are each day is to track the number of steps you take. This is simple to do with a mobile phone app or fitness tracker like the Fitbit. You can set movement goals each day and attempt to beat your record for most steps taken while at work. This will help you avoid spending too much time sitting at your desk.
#7 — Take the stairs
This is a simple yet effective tip for staying active — whenever you are given the choice between stairs and an elevator or escalator, take the stairs!
#8 — Start an office fitness challenge
Consider starting an office fitness challenge where participants have to walk a certain number of steps each day or lose a certain amount of weight in the next 3 months. This will encourage everyone in your office to maintain a positive attitude towards health and fitness.
For more helpful health and fitness articles, follow us on social media. We also regular publish useful advice and exercise information on our website. You will can find exercise videos here and advice videos here.
Our team of chiropractors at Newcastle Chiropractic Clinic and City Chiropractic Clinic in Stoke on Trent are here to help you.