A Victoria University physical activity expert says that aiming for less time sitting is the best way to stay healthy.
Professor Stuart Biddle, active living and public health program leader at VU’s Institute of Sport, Exercise and Active Living, is part of an international team studying the adverse health effects of prolonged sitting.
The research team worked with data from 38 previous intervention trials to explore strategies to conquer what has become a serious public health concern.
The most promising ideas included providing workers with sit-stand desks, encouraging people to keep track of how much time they spend sitting, setting personal goals for reducing sitting time, and setting reminders to take a break.
Other effective methods included informing people of the health benefits that could arise from spending less time sitting.
All of the methods proved to be successful on their own and, what’s more, none of them involved reminding people to exercise.
The findings should be of interest to anyone looking to improve their health by reducing their sitting time in their day-to-day lives, as many of the interventions can be adopted on an individual level, he said.
The study was published in the journal Health Psychology Review.
It supports another study from earlier this year suggesting that regardless of regular exercise, prolonged sedentary periods still pose major health threats.
(Source: Victoria University, Health Psychology Review)