Covid has caused remote learning and work-from-home to become the new normal, and research shows we’ve become more sedentary than ever before. Days of commuting and walking around campus have changed to hours of sitting in front of a computer.
Researchers at Kent State University recently studied how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected sedentary behavior and physical inactivity – specifically sitting – among university students. They enlisted more than 400 students, faculty, and staff to report on their physical activity levels both before and after COVID.
The results show that participants are now sitting eight more hours per week since COVID has hit. It also showed participants who were physically active pre-covid have been hit the hardest with gyms and other fitness facilities closing.
Health and Human Services professors Jacob Barkley, Ph.D. told Science Daily, “Independent of the changes in physical activity, the sample-wide increase in sitting by over an hour per day is concerning as excess sitting is associated with a variety of negative health outcomes, such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes and even a greater risk of dying earlier.”
The authors of the study made some recommendations for anyone finding their new daily routine to be behind a computer most of the day:
1. Try to minimize sitting for extended periods of time, and when possible, add in some exercise at home or outside.
2. For those who are still working or taking classes remotely, try to incorporate a standing desk into your routine and/or plan breaks where you get up and move away from your computer. During those breaks, try to do some light activity, like taking a walk.
3. Breaking up your sedentary activity by adding some physical activity will not only benefit your physical health; it can improve cognition, productivity and reduce stress.
Investing in a Swopper motion chair is a great way to seamlessly incorporate more movement into your day. You can easily keep your body in motion while studying, working, or conducting a Zoom meeting. The Muvman height adjustable chair is the perfect companion for any standing desk. It helps you adjust to standing more throughout the day while providing you relief while you perch.