Nowadays, a huge percentage of employees work full-time jobs in office settings. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with this. However, it’s no secret that most of these positions are sedentary. Basically, this means that these jobs require sitting in a motionless, sitting position. Generally, this describes the entire day.
Obviously, as physical therapists, our patients’ health and safety is an enormous priority. Whether we’re guiding you through exercises or consulting you on back pain or a diet plan, our goal is always your well being. Therefore, we want all who currently work (or will work) a sedentary job to practice proper work area ergonomics. In this post, we’ll explore precisely what that means, why it’s important and how you can apply it right away.
First: Why Is a Sedentary Lifestyle So Unhealthy?
First and foremost, it’s important for you to know why we encourage proper work area ergonomics. Often, physical inactivity can have serious consequences on our health. And sedentary lifestyles, or prolonged, full-time inactivity, is doubly as dangerous. In fact, the World Health Organization (WHO) itself warns that sedentary lifestyles can very well be among the ten leading causes of death/disability in the world.
Less activity means burning fewer calories. Obviously, this dramatically increases your likelihood to gain weight. Also, inactivity leads to serious drops in muscle strength and endurance. Since you’re not engaging them as much, they weaken as a result. In addition, your bones could weaken as they lose mineral content. You might see damage to your metabolism, as your body has trouble digesting sugars and fats. In addition, your immune system, hormones, blood circulation and joints will likely feel the consequences, among others.
Furthermore, physical inactivity can also lead to chronic diseases. Without enough exercise, you seriously elevate your risk of obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure, metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes and more.
Proper Work Area Ergonomics
Fortunately, you can alleviate a huge percentage of these risks by implementing some very simple measures at work. Just because you work full-time in an office doesn’t mean there’s no way to counteract these problems. Also, these adjustments aren’t just ideal for reducing health risks. In addition, many find that typical pains, aches and soreness no longer bother them after practicing proper ergonomics. You can eliminate back pain, wrist pain, knee pain, neck aches and more with simple adjustments to your work space.
Try using a split keyboard or keyboard tray. These will lower your risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome. Of course, the simplest measures are often the most effective. For example, simply walking at specific intervals throughout the day can be a huge help. Also, replacing your standard, sitting desk with a standing desk can eliminate most of the health risks associated with sitting all day. Additionally, if you’d like to lose weight, treadmill desks are an option, as well. Many companies choose to have mandatory standing or walking meetings to encourage healthier lifestyles.
You can also set stretch reminders to ensure you stretch at least once an hour. To keep your core in good shape, you can keep a balance disc at your desk. If possible, try to do push-ups or sit-ups everyday. A massive selection of workplace ergonomic products are available from numerous retailers. Browse the different options, assess which appeal to you and work healthy!
Conclusion – Farmingdale Physical Therapy West
At Farmingdale Physical Therapy West, we want you to be as healthy as possible. These simple measures can make a tremendous difference in your overall wellness in so many ways. We’re more than happy to consult with you on other ways you can make healthy adjustments to your everyday life, at work or home. It doesn’t matter if you want to improve your physique, mobility, deal with pain or just improve your general health. We can provide one-on-one, individual insight specifically for you.