Offering someone a seat can be seen as a gesture of kindness, appreciation and manners. Especially when your feet are tired, there are few things better than a good seat. While sitting is something that we all do, it is a position that can be bad for our health if done for too long.  Lying down like sitting are periods of rest that are necessary for the body to rejuvenate, but have often contributed to the decline of health

Typically when we are being entertained, working or traveling we are seated.   One of the biggest reasons that we see rates of obesity have increased is that our society has become more inactive and rested or sat more than we have needed.  In the past children who played in the streets now play video games.  People spend countless hours surfing the Internet and watching TV instead of going for walks or exercising.  Most people don’t travel by walking or riding a bike but by trains, planes and automobiles; which has all had dramatic effects on our health

The effect of extended sitting on health has lead to weaker muscles, poor circulation and bad posture, which is not including many other ways that your health can be compromised.  So how do we remedy some of the effects on health that sitting has caused? Below are 3 ways to combat the effects of sitting

Stretch- If you have ever taken a lengthy car ride or sat in the same position for a long time, your body often feels very stiff after you get up.  Stretching elongates short muscles that stiffen when stuck in the same positions; the hip flexors in particular need stretching when we sit for long periods.  With age our bodies tend to be stiffer, which means we should all pay more attention to keeping our bodies flexible and loose.

Get up- there is a reason why people who lay down for extended periods of time develop bedsores or poor circulation. Just like laying down, our blood doesn’t circulate when seated in the same position for long times. If you have been sitting down for longer than 30 minutes you should get up and shake your limbs out or walk around to restore good blood circulation and oxygen flow.

Exercise- when we don’t use our muscles they naturally get weak, and very rarely when seated are our bodies getting an adequate workout.  Movement or exercise keeps our muscles strong particularly the ones we use for posture like our back muscles.  Ideally we should exercise at least 3-5 times a week to ensure that our bodies stay strong.


About the Author: Eric Daw is an active aging specialist and the owner of Omni Fitt. Omni Fitt is dedicated to the wellbeing, health and quality of life of people aged 65 and over. Eric motivates and empowers the older adult population to take responsibility for their independence, health and fitness through motivating and positive coaching experiences.