The hazards of working in a sedentary job are often overlooked. We think because we don’t do physical activities that we have less risk of injury or illness at work. Research is showing that sitting for extended periods of time is contrary to what the human body was built for. My job requires me to be at a computer for hours, add meetings and other desk work and the day can be 10 hours long. How much sitting is too much? How much time should you spend being active? The answers to these questions are varied.
The research does reveal some startling findings. This quote is from Adam McDowell’s article, “The Health Risks of Today’s Work Environments,” published September 21, 2011 in Canadian Business:
“Back in 1981, the Canada Fitness and Lifestyle Research Institute asked 17,013 adults how much of their day they spent sitting. Follow-up interviews conducted up to 13 years after the original survey were used to track the number of deaths and serious illnesses among the participants. When 21st-century researchers cross-referenced the death statistics with the sitting data, they encountered a stark result. Controlling for all other factors—age, existing illnesses and even physical exercise—the more a survey respondent sat in 1981, the more likely he or she was to be dead by 1994.”
I did post an article in the Employee Help Source “Employee Health” resource room that helped me answer some of these questions. If you have insights, I invite you to help us start a forum discussion. Go to employeehelpsource.com forum.