Can Be Hazardous To Your Work

Can Be Hazardous
16 November 2013

At least initially, you probably would not believe me if I told you how destructive bad postural habits are to your physical health and general psychological well-being, and how destructive sitting is generally. You would also be very surprised how much poor sitting habits generally contribute to corporate, industrial and government health care bills.

Who would have thought that this "activity" which many of us do all day and which we are perhaps seldom even aware of, is the main source of most of your health concerns?

Researchers have been expounding the detrimental effects of sitting for over 100 years. Sitting is indeed one of the most subtle, unrecognized, but devastating stresses affecting your body, including your nervous system and your mind.

In our complex corporate and industrial society, sitting is a way of life for the majority of us. However, you were designed for movement. Sitting has been shown through research to cause the muscles to tense. As the muscles tense, they use more of the bodies store of energy. This increased energy demand, contributes to your general fatigue at the end of the day. Sitting also causes degeneration in the spine - more specifically the lumbar spine. The joints and discs wear out due to the weight of the head and upper body on the lower back.

The following are short lists of the more common health problems that have been directly associated through extensive research, with the simple act of sitting.


  • low back pain and weakness, with decreased flexibility
  • degeneration of the entire vertebral column
  • neck/arm pain with stiffness/weakness
  • rounding of the upper back due to weakness of the muscles
  • weak abdominal muscles
  • varicose veins


  • general fatigue and inability to sleep
  • tension headaches and visual disturbances
  • general respiratory, digestive and cardiovascular pathology
  • high blood pressure
  • stomach ulcers
  • weakened immune system
  • susceptible to colds
  • increased utilization of your body's vitamins/minerals
  • weight gain

It is not recommended that you toss your chair through the window, because we all need to sit sometimes. However, if you apply the following suggestions, you will at least have less fatigue at the end of the day and be able to obtain a good night's sleep.

Take breaks in the morning and afternoon and do numbers 2, 3 & 6 of the "Body Balancers" found below this article. After doing the "Body Balancers" stand up and walk around for 5-10 minutes. This will relax the muscles in your body and break the monotony. Studies have shown that with regular breaks, productivity and creativity increase. Standing up stimulates the nervous system and causes more blood to go to your head, which clears and energizes your brain. All the "Body Balancers" can be done at home at night before bed as well.

Lunch time you should go for at least a 20 minute walk. This does a number of specific and positive things for your body. These are:

  1. Increase the circulation to the entire body.
  2. Restores normal function to the lower back muscles and joints, along with the pelvic musculature.
  3. Helps to work out the tension in the muscles. (Dr. Levy at York University).

For those of you that have developed low back pain or degenerative changes in your lower back, here is what you need to do and do it now, because with your continual sitting, it will only get worse. Begin a structured rehabilitation program for your lower back. Strengthening your low back will help prevent the key muscles which weaken due to sitting, from getting worse.

If you have chronic back pain or degenerative discs, you may require specific therapy to control and improve your condition. These therapies are natural and effective and now available. They will help you get rid of the inflammation and pain, along with healing of the tissues. This, combined with rehabilitation exercises, will help your body cope more effectively with your sitting.

Read other Blogs