The dangers of sitting

Paul Adamson
September 9, 2016


Every day I see clients who are achy or in pain because they sit too much. Until about 10,000 years ago, humans were nomadic and the Charles Eames office chair hadn’t yet been dreamed up. The human body evolved as a hunter gatherer for tens of thousands of years. It’s only fairly recently that we have lived a sedentary life. These days, of course, most of us spend our lives working from a chair, then go home and slump in a chair or sofa. Now, I’m not saying let’s go back to gathering wild fruit and nuts and hunting for our meat – I'm really grateful for the Islington farmers market. But so much sitting is damaging our bodies – our legs, our backs, our shoulders, our necks. Not to mention our bellies that, as a nation, are getting bigger every year… 74% of men in the UK and 64% of women are overweight!

We do what we can to counter the pressures of our daily routine. The really clever ones do yoga – my healthiest clients are the ones who regularly do yoga or Pilates. Unfortunately I haven’t been able to get into yoga myself and I prefer to whizz around on my bike, play with the free weights in the gym and thrash up and down the swimming pool here in Highbury. Sometimes though, after an early morning of exercise and a day spent on my feet, it’s wonderful to collapse into a chair. I should be grateful to chairs - they bring me so many wonderful clients. If you find yourself getting stiff shoulders and arms or with a neck that isn't turning as freely as it should, or with lower back pain, you might want to think about taking up some exercise to help counteract the effects of too much sitting, doing some light stretches while sitting, and, of course, getting yourself booked in for a deep-tissue massage so I can break down those tensions and bring some ease.

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