How is a Sedentary Lifestyle Affecting Our Health?

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How is a Sedentary Lifestyle Affecting Our Health?

Doctors and other medical professionals often use the term ‘sedentary lifestyle’ to describe someone who engages in no or little regular physical activity or movement. It describes a person – regardless of whether they are a child or an adult – who does not do sufficient physical exercise (or even enough day-to-day movement) to be healthy and fit.

A colloquial term for those who are spending their days sedentary is a ‘couch potato’!

What’s contributing to our sedentary lifestyle?

A sedentary lifestyle has (unfortunately) become more apparent in many Australians, and there are a few reasons why.

What's contributing to out sedentary lifestyle?
Technology is the big caveat here. Don’t get us wrong: technology is amazing and we love it! But the ease at which we can access information, watch movies, play games, and talk to our friends has resulted in a lifestyle where we simply don’t move as often.

Back in the day, to create entertainment, we’d play board games, or ride our bikes around the street. We didn’t have tablets to play Candy Crush – instead we walked to the shops and bought ourselves candy treats.

We’ve become accustomed to this sort of behaviour, and for those Gen Y-ers who have grown up using an iPad and can navigate their way around an iPhone better than Baby Boomers, they’re getting used to a dangerous practice that can have adverse health effects in the future.

Manual labour has also found itself competing with machines and computers. Many physically based jobs have, over the past several decades – as technology improved – been replaced with automatic machinery. This shift from physical labour to office jobs is a key contributor.

Physical activity vs. exercise:

These are two terms that are often interchanged, but they’re not entirely the same.

You see, all exercise is physical activity, but not all physical activity is exercise.

Physical activating refers to any body movement, for any purpose, such as:

  • Standing on the train
  • Climbing up and down stairs
  • Carrying in the supermarket bags from the car
  • Vacuuming the house
  • Playing with children
  • Washing a car

Basically, it is any bodily movement that requires energy.

Exercise is a sublet of physical activity, and is defined as movement that is “planned, structured, and repetitive”, with the aim of improving and maintaining overall physical fitness and wellness.

Both physical activity and exercise are beneficial to your health, and can improve your heart health.

What can you do to combat a sedentary lifestyle (outside of the office)?

In the office, we, of course, recommend height adjustable desks. You can switch between sitting and standing with one of our electric desks as often as needed, throughout your entire workday. Memory settings remember your favourite positions, so you can enjoy precise and appropriate height settings when you’re sitting and standing.

For more information on standing desks, the workplace, and the dangers of prolonged sitting, you can check out the following blog posts:

 5 features you should look for in a standing desk

 ’60 minutes’ investigates: is sitting down killing us? Sitting is the new smoking

 Making the switch to a standing desk

We’re also passionate about conveying the fact that it doesn’t take a gym session during your workday to inject some movement:

– Get up and out of the office for a brisk ten-minute walk before lunch
– Get up more often to talk to people (instead of sending an email!)
– Aim to drink more water so you get up to refill and use the bathroom more often
– Choose the stairs over the lift
– Get to work ten minutes early for a brisk walk to start your morning on an energised foot!

Outside of the office, it’s really a matter of being conscious and open to improvement. You could:

– Get up during every commercial break and walk up and down the stairs once
– Walk to the local shops instead of driving (especially if you’re only buying one or two items!)

– Suggest a walk at the local park before or after a coffee catch up (rather than just a coffee catch up!)
– Get into the habit of adding a brisk 10-minute walk on a Saturday morning to kick-start your day
– Spread out general chores: instead of waiting for a mess to build up and spending your whole Sunday cleaning the house, spend a shorter amount of time most days of the week cleaning up (even five minutes of tidying messy clothes will help!)
– Spend more time outside (whether it’s gardening or playing with the dog for 15 minutes, every little bit of movement helps. And you’ll get your daily vitamin D dosage!)

School holidays

School holidays are two words that illicit shrieks of excitement from children (freedom – finally!) but cause parents to groan in despair. How are you going to keep them entertained for two whole weeks?

What's is a sedentary lifestyle?
While it’s simply not realistic to presume that parents can take this sort of time off work to do daily activities, there are still a few ways you can keep minds and bodies active during the holidays.

If you can, take a few days off, even if it’s three or four days of their total two-week break. Plan activities for these days, even simple ones like going shopping, visiting a family member, or spending an hour or two at a playground.

If you’re more into structured plans, you could:

  • Enrol children in sports days
  • Sign them up for cooking classes
  • Lead an exploration of your capital city
  • Take them bowling
  • Plan a picnic in public gardens like Melbourne’s Botanical Gardens
  • Have a day out at the zoo
  • Visit a market (like food or arts and crafts, and a day or night market)
  • Visit a museum

Spend some time planning out school holidays to ensure bored kids don’t end up sitting at home on their laptops for the whole two weeks. If you can’t take more than a few days off, consult with other parents to see if you can spread holiday duties with them.

Of course, ask kids what they would like to do. Maybe it’s just as simple as taking the dog to the park or spending a day at the shopping centre.

Above all, don’t forget that you don’t need to exhaust your children. It’s OK to have a few quiet days at home. Young ones might like to colour while watching their favourite TV show, or snuggle under the doona and enjoy a movie night – and that’s no problem. Just make sure they’re not sitting like zombies for the entire day.

We don’t have room for a sedentary lifestyle! Set the right example for your children and keep their minds and bodies active and energised!

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Google Reviews

Ergomotion

Google Reviews

Big Dawg 13/08/22

Google
Bought sit, stand desk. Great product, fantastic service all at a reasonable price.

Jack Lu 12/08/22

Google
Guy was a pleasure to deal with from the beginning and catered to my specifications. The quality of the table was amazing! I’ve seen some other desks from other manufacturers which were extremely flimsy, unstable and poorly constructed. The product was custom built and received very promptly as well. Thanks again Guy, I know where I’ll be heading the next time I’m in need of a desk!

Claudia Franceschini 05/08/22

Google
My young son adores his sit stand desk from Ergomotion, we are very happy with the quality and we love that his desk will grow with him into his adult years. Guy was a pleasure to deal with. We highly recommend.

JT 30/07/22

Google
Guy provided an e-desk for me. I used it with a natural bamboo tabletop 180cm in width and it works wonderfully. Guy was very responsive with a qeury i had about the product - i couldnt ask for more. Highly recommended.

Michael Dao 21/07/22

Google
Guy has been one of the most helpful people in helping me setting up my brand new desk frame. He guided me on where to find the best quality desktops to add onto the desk legs.

Desiree Inez Roque 07/07/22

Google
Guy was an absolute professional from start to finish. Very seamless process with ordering to pick up taking less than 24hrs.

Guy will take the time to understand your requirements, communicates clearly and will not try to upsell items you don’t require. Instructions to put together are clear and the videos on the website are helpful too.

We are extremely happy with our purchases. Desks are well designed and built. We love our new desks and would happily recommend Ergomotion.

Thanks Guy and all the best!

Nathan Byren 01/07/22

Google
**Reposting from my personal account.**

I spoke to Guy shortly after moving to Australia to get some information about their standing desks. I'd been on the hunt for one for a while and was struggling to find something that seemed to be good quality while still being reasonably priced.

Guy answered all my questions confidently and clearly, checked their stock levels since I was looking at a hardwood desktop not specified on their site and got back to me promptly with all the information.

When I was ready to go ahead with the order, it was a quick phone call and my order was on it's way. When the delivery seemed as though it might take longer than expected, Guy dropped the desk with me himself.

I put the desk together which was a very simple process - although a powered screw driver would have made the job much easier for me, I left all my tools in South Africa when I moved over and haven't built up a collection again just yet. The desk has been great and will get I'm sure, many years of happy use!

I highly recommend Ergomotion as a brand! Guy's service is a strong addition to an already great product.

Joshua Brown 01/07/22

Google
Guy was just a pleasure to deal with. Excellent knowledge and advice which followed through to excellent after sales. The e-desk is very sturdy, easy to use and looks great. Great job Guy and thank you

Simona Scarparo 19/06/22

Google
I love my Ergomotion stand up desk! It is easy to set up and is made of quality materials. However, the best part of the purchase was the excellent customer service I received. Guy (the owner) came out in the pouring rain to measure the boot of my car to make sure I could pick the desk up (fully assembled) and it would fit. I ordered the desk on a Monday and it was ready by Tuesday morning. He helped loading the desk in my car, removed a leg so that it could fit and explained how to put the leg back in, which was very straightforward and did not need any tools. If you are considering buying a stand up desk, I would definitely recommend Ergomotion.

Sue Fraser 14/06/22

Google
Guy was lovely to deal with. He was prompt and courteous in all his communication. He was happy for us to look at the desk before purchase. Once ordered, the desk arrived so quickly. Guy set it all up and we are extremely happy with the product. Thanks Guy for your great service and care.
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