Is Sitting the New Smoking?

poor sitting posture

Recent news reports have claimed that ‘sitting is the new smoking’ but why is sitting considered to be so bad for you?

Research has found that adults of a working age are sedentary for an average of 9.5 hours a day. Sedentary behaviour increases with age, with adults aged over 75 averaging at 11 hours a day (British Heart Foundation). Sitting for prolonged periods has been associated with poor mental health as well as higher rates of cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

To some this might sound like a scary statement – especially if you feel that you CANT move or if you have concerns that when you do you will feel pain or you might be at risk of falling over.

The general common sense advice would be to take regular breaks from sitting by standing up and moving around for 5 minutes every half an hour.

At Estuary Clinic we understand that it is not always as easy as saying ‘you need to get moving’. A lot of people feel scared to move, especially due to pain, stiffness or disability. Exercise can seem like a very daunting and unachievable prospect.

Physiotherapists don’t only treat people with injuries, they can also provide you with strategies to improve your movement, increase your activity levels and improve your physical and mental wellbeing.

Here are just a few ways that Physiotherapists can help you achieve better movement:
• Educating you about pain, helping you to understand why you have pain and teaching you ways to move with less pain.
• Teaching you ways to adapt and tailor exercises to help you feel more confident about moving again.
• Helping you to get back in control of your body and movement.
• Reducing risk of falls by helping you to improve balance, mobility and educating you on ways to adapt your lifestyle and create a safer environment at home.
• Guiding you in ways to improve your lifestyle.
• Providing you with manual therapy, such as osteopathy, massage and other treatment techniques to promote the body’s natural healing mechanisms and improve movement control.

by Ruth Bennett
BSc (Hons) Chartered Physiotherapist

Moving might be the last thing that you feel like doing but being active is fundamental for maintaining and improving our health and wellbeing.

Start today by taking regular breaks from sitting and moving gently.


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