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Top 5 effective exercises to counteract extended sitting’s negative effect

According to research, those who sat still for more than eight hours a day had a mortality risk that was comparable to that of being obese and smoking. Find out the top 5 effective exercises to counteract the negative effects of extended sitting.

Numerous studies conducted throughout time have shown that prolonged sitting can not only be bad for your health but even be fatal. According to research, those who sat still for more than eight hours a day had a mortality risk that was comparable to that of being obese and smoking.

If you spend a lot of time sitting down, you should be aware that doing so can cause you to become overweight and obese, increase your chance of developing type 2 diabetes, several forms of cancer, and experience an early death. Additionally, it can slow down your metabolism, which has a negative impact on your body’s capacity to control blood sugar, blood pressure, and burn fat.

According to the WHO (2013), 3.2 million individuals die before their time each year as a result of a sedentary lifestyle.

Additionally, it raises the likelihood of developing long-term musculoskeletal conditions such low back pain, neck pain, and knee pain, which will pose serious socioeconomic problems in the future.

What does extended sitting mean?

“Prolonged sitting behaviour is when a person spends more than 8 to 9 hours a day sitting down with little to no energy expenditure. These include long work hours, frequent car or public transportation use, and excessive screen time “LCCE Designation – Senior Physiotherapist, Cloudnine Group of Hospitals, Bangalore, Sahakarnagar, states Lalchawimawi Sanate PT.

The negative effects of prolonged sitting include:

Blood pressure elevation

– Greater chance of developing type 2 diabetes

– Extra body fat in the waist area

– An abundance of harmful cholesterol

– A musculoskeletal disorder is caused by an increase in muscle imbalance.

– Enhanced risk of anxiety and sadness

Can the effects of prolonged sitting be reversed?

We need to reduce the amount of time we spend sitting for extended periods of time and boost our energy expenditure throughout the day in order to counteract the negative effects of too much sitting on our bodies.

Lalchawimawi Sanate recommends five activities that are simple to include into your workday and can help counteract the negative effects of prolonged sitting:

One pushup

Push-ups strengthen the upper body, enhance posture, and engage the core muscles.

How to proceed

– With hands slightly wider than shoulder width, hold the edge of your desk.

– Retract your feet till your body is perpendicular to the ground.

– Your arms are completely extended and your feet are flat on the ground.

– Push yourself back to the beginning position by contracting your core muscles, bending your elbow at a 90-degree angle, and pushing with your body.

Be careful not to arch your back.

Things to keep in mind

– Check to see whether your workstation can support your weight.

You can perform wall push-ups if not.

If you are performing push-ups for the first time while pregnant, wall push-ups will be simpler.

Sitting Spine Twist

Benefits include increased spinal mobility, chest, hip, middle, and lower back stretches, and oblique muscle activation.

How to proceed

– Position yourself in a straight-backed chair with your feet flat on the ground.

– Put your left hand on your right thigh and your right hand on the backrest of the right-side seat. – Rotate your torso slowly until your eyes are on your right shoulder and your left shoulder is parallel to your right leg. On the opposite side, repeat.

Sitting knee flexions

Benefits include improved posture, a reduction in back discomfort, and a strengthening of the erector spinae and core muscles.

How to proceed

– Hold the armrest of the chair while sitting upright in it without putting your back on the backrest.

– Straighten both of your legs parallel to the ground while engaging your abs.

– Keep your feet together and bend your knees in the same direction.

– Try deliberately contracting your abdominal muscles. Note: If you have trouble bending both knees toward your body, try bending them one at a time.

Squats in a chair

Benefits: Chair squats increase hip and knee joint flexibility while strengthening your glutes, hamstrings, and quadriceps muscles.

How to proceed

– Take a step back from your chair and stand with your feet shoulder-distance apart and toes pointed outward.

– While supporting your body weight on both ankle joints, bend your knees and hips to a chair-like position.

Hold the pose for five seconds before resuming your original position gently.

Remind yourself not to slouch and to keep your knees from touching your toes. 5. Heel Lifting

Benefits include improving circulation, especially in those with chronic vein disease, strengthening the Gastrocnemius and Soleus muscles in the calf, and improving ankle stability.

How to proceed

– Hold on to your desk or chair while you stand with your legs spread and your shoulders level.

– Raise your heel up until your toes are flat on the ground. Hold that position for three to five seconds, then gently descend your heel to the ground.


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