Sitting is Killing You? Why It’s not that Simple

Sitting is killing you--do this instead!

Sitting is killing you? Your chair is killing you?  You’ve probably heard, “sitting is the new smoking”, but Dr. James Levine in his book, Get Up! Why Your Chair is Killing You and What You Can Do About It says, ” If you look at America as a whole, sitting is worse than smoking.” Because only 18% of the population smokes and more than 75% of the population sits all day long.

So what’s the answer? Get a standing desk? A treadmill desk? Stop sitting completely? Quit your job? All possibilities. But, I would argue that the problem goes beyond sitting and eliminating the chair.

It’s not sitting that is killing you. Your lifestyle is killing you. What you do habitually, day after day, is killing you. Tweet This!

(getting it straight that we’re all going to die, but your daily habits either give you long, healthy life with a short period of decline, or a shorter life with a long painful decline)

To get you out of your chair, get your FREE ebook on simple bodyweight training. CLICK HERE

Since you won’t be using your chair much anymore, here are some alternative uses for your chair..

Why Sitting (considered here as synonymous with not moving) is Bad:

Inactivity causes all manner of physical illness from arthritis, to back pain, to diabetes, to heart disease,to obesity, to osteoporosis.

But the ill effects of inactivity that I am most concerned with are mood and general life satisfaction. Basically the less active you are, the more likely you are to experience depression, lower creativity, productivity, and vitality. In other words, the more you sit, and the less you move, the less happy you will be.

Sitting too much shortens the hip flexors, and causes gluteal amnesia (butt forgets how to work) which leads to pancake butt. Since there is a shortage of round asses these days— don’t let this happen to you!

Simple Ways to Sit Less and Move More

  • Remove as many chairs from your home and workplace as possible.
  • Convert your desk at work and at home to a standing desk.
  • Take frequent breaks, short ones every half hour, longer breaks every hour.
  • Use a bar or tall table for eating so you can more easily alternate sitting with standing.
  • Use the bar at the coffee shop/restaurant for the same reason.
  • Lie on your belly on the floor when reading and writing.
  • Kneel
  • Half kneel
  • Tall kneel
  • Half squat
  • Squat
  • Pace
  • Stand with one foot up on a chair
  • Stand with one knee up on a chair
  • When you meet up with someone suggest a walking date or meeting
  • Do more things outdoors
  • Drive less/walk more
  • Try one full day without sitting–just as an experiment–just for fun.

If You Must Sit

  • Learn how to sit with proper alignment (this is a posture that most of us just can’t maintain long)
  • Get up frequently
  • Put your feet up and lean back
  • Sit on the floor

Sitting for short periods of time has probably always been part of the human posture/movement repertoire. It is not something the body is meant to do for long periods of time.

Standing all day isn’t the answer. Never sitting isn’t the answer.

MOVEMENT is the answer. Tweet This!

See my story on how movement saved my life.

Movement is the answer. Movement is the answer. Movement is the answer. Movement is the answer.

Not just any movement, but movement that your body is designed to be doing. In other words, move with full range of motion, in all 3 planes of motion, with lots of variety.

Don’t forget to grab your free copy of my ebook on bodyweight training. CLICK HERE

I believe that movement is the answer to just about everything. The answer to your troubles lies in the body–the realm of the physical (soma and psyche cannot be separated).

Here’s my line of thinking when I feel down in the dumps (anxious, out of my mind, insane– take your pick):

“What is WRONG with me today??!! I must need to Move. Eat better food. Have sex. Hug somebody or Get a massage.

Lifting weights and other forms of high intensity exercise are wonderful, and I would argue necessary, but the bulk of your movement needs to be slow, easy intensity with lots of variety. Play.

Pick a simple form of movement that you love and DO IT. Walk. Move after every meal.  Jump on a trampoline. Get a slackline. Go to the park with your kids, or the skate park, the parcour gym, or the climbing gym.  Always start your day with some simple, easy joint mobility or yoga.

So, pick one or two things from the above list and DO IT. Let me know what you picked and how it makes you feel in the comments below.

Want more on living strong, sacred, sensual? Sign up below!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *