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Sitting increases the risk of developing serious diseases such as diabetes and heart disease

Young woman sat on sofa using laptopExperts discovered that as little as 14 days spent sitting around reduces our muscle mass, increases body fat and raises the potential for high cholesterol. And they warned that taking at least 10,000 steps a day - widely regarded as a target for maintaining good health - should be something people strive for to avoid the risk of disease.

Dr Dan Cuthbertson, who led the new study and is presenting his findings at the European Congress on Obesity in Porto, Portugal, said any physical activity - even walking - is better than being sedentary.

He said: “This doesn’t need to be structured exercise - it could be things like getting off the bus a stop earlier or walking to the shops instead of driving. If you think of a typical mum at home who is always busy and on the go but doesn’t go the gym regularly, there are still significant health benefits in what she’s doing.”

Dr Cuthbertson’s team, from the University of Liverpool, followed a group of 28 healthy people of a normal weight with an average age of 25. Participants usually took 10,000 steps per day or more but did not have more than two hours of structured exercise - such as going to the gym or playing sport - per week

For 14 days, people wore a SenseWear armband, which lets researchers track levels of physical activity, steps, sleep and lifestyle. The group also had health checks on things such as fat, muscle mass and physical fitness at the start and the end of the study.

For the research, people were told to reduce their activity levels by more than 80per cent to around 1,500 steps per day. They were also told to eat their normal meals and keep a food diary. Over the course of the study, exercise levels dropped from a daily average of 161 minutes to 36 minutes. At the same time, the amount of time spent sedentary - such as sitting down - increased by an average of 129 minutes.

The results showed significant changes to the body, including loss of muscle mass (average loss 0.36kg) and increases in total body fat, with central body fat going up by around 1per cent. There was also an increase in liver fat and an increase in bad cholesterol markers. Overall, cardio-respiratory fitness levels also declined.

Dr Cuthbertson warned that people who did not exercise risked becoming obese and developing illnesses such as Type 2 diabetes.

“The take-home message is two-fold,” he said. “If you do formal exercise, it may not be enough and keeping active as part of your daily life is important. And for those who don’t exercise, avoiding prolonged sitting and increasing your daily step counts has clear health benefits.”

He added: “It does appear that there is something in this idea of 10,000 steps a day being good for you. People have become obsessed with 10,000 steps a day and this research shows it’s a good thing.”

He said people in the study were young and fit.

“If you take obese people, older people or those at risk of diabetes, all the risks of a sedentary lifestyle may be even greater,” he added. “Our day-to-day physical activity is key to abstaining from disease and health complications. People must avoid sitting for long periods of time.”

So once again, the virtues of using a standing desk everyday has significant health and wellbeing benefits. Why wait until it's too late?

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Three quarters of modern parents worry their children are less active than they were at the same age

Kids sitting on sofa with gadgetsTHREE quarters of modern parents worry their children are less physically active than they themselves were at the same age, according to a study.

Researchers who polled 1,000 mums and dads of kids aged four to 16, found keeping their children fit and active is a concern shared by many of those who took part.

She says: “This study highlights the confusion faced by parents across the country concerning physical activity levels in children.

“We need to get children doing more physical activity and get them feeling good about themselves. We will then have a nation of happier, healthier children.

“Children should be active every single day. Exercise should be made part of a child’s daily routine, both in and out of school, every morning”

Incredibly, one fifth of parents said they rely solely on schools to keep their children fit and physically active – with two thirds (66 per cent) believing their children get their full quota of physical education during the school day.

A further 31 per cent said they are led by their child, and did not push their child to get out and about more if they don’t want to, while six in 10 judge whether the kids need more exercise by how tired they are.

But 57 per cent of parents admitted noticing a significant change in their children’s behaviour when they were encouraged to exercise.

A quarter believed their children listen more after exercise, while a third of kids have improved concentration.

More than half of those polled admitted their children were much happier after some sort of physical exertion.

Just more information as to why we should be getting our children more every day active both inside and outside the classroom.

Standing desks in UK classrooms are a must.

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Classroom Standing Desk Case Study

Malton Primary School EIGER Classroom Standing Desk PhotoRecently we had a 2 week trial of our EIGER Junior Classroom Standing Desks at Malton Primary School in the UK.

It was a huge success.

 

We asked Richard Allman, the Leader of PE Sport and Development to give us his feedback via a case study and it's here...

Aim and Objectives of Standing Desk Case Study:

Allow class teachers to assess the impact of standing desks upon classroom behaviour, task engagement, and attitudes to learning.

Quote/s (From pupil/parent/teacher that captures this work):

KS1 Teacher – “I was amazed at how children responded; I had them as provision areas to encourage written work. However, what I found was that the majority of children used the desks to stand, read and collaborate on challenges.

Upper KS2 Teacher – “After the initial excitement wore off it was pleasing to see how quickly Y6 children accepted the desks as part of their daily working environment. They were fully engaged in using them. There were no negative impacts on behaviour in my room.”

What we wanted to change or improve:

We wanted to look into options for increasing provision for purposeful physical activity throughout the school day. We wanted to look at how we could make our classroom environments more active without negatively impacting learning behaviours.

What we did (Key Actions):

We introduced standing desks into classrooms for small scale trial intervention over a 2 week period. We gave class teachers autonomy over how they utilised the desks as a learning resource in their rooms. Staff were tasked with reflecting upon their experiences with a specific focus upon behaviour, engagement, and attitudes to learning.

The Impact:

Participating staff responded unanimously positively about the impact that the desks had in their room.

There were no negative experiences reported in terms of behaviour, engagement and attitudes to learning.

The desks complimented our approach to collaborative learning and facilitated positive discussion to the extent where the desks became a focal point for children to go to in order to collaborate.

Challenges/barriers and potential solutions:

The main challenge with the desks was the space that each unit would take up. To overcome this we found that using the desks around the edges of the room as opposed to directly replacing existing working spaces was the most effective method within rooms.

So we were delighted with the case study feedback and to learn that Malton Primary will be looking to introduce the EIGER Junior standing desks into their classrooms soon.

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Nick White May 18, 2017 2 tags (show) Add a comment

Another Real Life Story about 1 Week at a Standing desk

Lady at standing deskJulie Dixon is 52 and she is a mortgage protection advisor. A national UK newspaper provided her with a standing desk option for a week. These are some of her findings...

“I was surprised at the difference standing at my desk made to my productivity and success.

“I make a few phone calls I’d been putting off and some ended up with me getting some new business, which they hadn’t agreed to in the past.

“I didn’t get that post-lunch slump and my lower back pain seemed to lessen too.

“I’ve been in this industry for 30 years and my week at the standing desk was one of the most  productive I’ve ever had.”

Improving productivity is one of the key benefits of using a standing desk. Increasing your heart rate improves blood circulation and therefore oxygen levels to all your major organs, including your brain! 

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Feedback from Primary School Trial of Classroom Standing Desks

Thorner Primary School Children Running on TrackToday we went to meet with Ian Holmes, the head teacher of Thorner Primary School in Leeds (UK) after a one month trial of our EIGER Junior classroom standing desks. Ian is one of the leading supporters of active learning in educational environments - both inside and outside the classroom.

So much so that he has had a running track (it's bright blue!) installed around the playing field to help with their commitment to the Daily Mile - www.thedailymile.co.uk. It was even opened by Johnny Brownlee the UK Olympic Triathlete.

Ian trialled 7 EIGER Junior standing desks in Year 5 with great success. The children really liked the option of standing as to sitting and loved the fact they could adjust the height themselves.

Some children found it hard at first but this only validated the need for them to spend less time in the chair. By the end of the 4 weeks the children were used to standing more and were disappointed when they left the classroom.

Ian is going to be recommending the inclusion of a number of EIGER Junior classroom standing desks for every classroom.

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Blood Pressure Reduced in Just 1 Week Using a Standing Desk

Standing Desk imageDIGITAL marketing worker Craig Freeman, 31, is from Reigate in the UK. Craig trialled a standing desk for just one week for an article in a national newspaper.

In just one week he saw benefits. His blood pressure was above normal before the test and within normal limits after.

This is what he said...“Having spent the past week standing in an office full of 20 other people sitting, I’ve actually really enjoyed it – despite the stick I’ve been getting!

“It felt most beneficial mid-morning and late afternoon. Those are the times I feel like I need a stretch when I’m sitting at a desk.

“I normally suffer from back pain but, after a week of standing, it’s felt better. I’ve felt more productive, too.

“It’s good to know I will be burning more calories if I keep standing at my desk.”

So there it is straight from a normal guy in an every day office. The benefits are there for everyone. Let's spend less time in the chair and more time active working.

Standing desks work!

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Fears the UK faces a stroke epidemic fuelled by bulging waistlines

Stroke brain imageThe UK is facing an “shocking” stroke epidemic as bulging waistlines take their toll, a major report by Kings College London has found. The study of 35 countries warns that within two decades, the number of strokes is set to rise by 44 per cent - far above the average across Europe.

The UK already has the sixth highest number of strokes in Europe, with among the highest cholesterol levels.

Cardiac experts last night warned that soaring obesity levels are fuelling heart problems, and said simple lifestyle changes could greatly reduce the risk of strokes.

The research shows that on current trends, the number of strokes in the UK will rise by 44 per cent by 2035 - compared with a European average of 34 per cent.

Up to nine in ten strokes are preventable, if changes are made to lifestyle, or treatment started for conditions which increase heart risks, research suggests.

The Stroke Association said: “Most strokes are preventable and everyone can take steps to lower their risk of stroke as they get older."

“Obesity can increase your risk of stroke by at least 64 per cent, however simple lifestyle changes, like eating healthier meals, taking regular exercise and stopping smoking along with checking your blood pressure regularly can greatly reduce your risk.”

And on that you probably guessed what we're going to add...less time in the chair and more time at a standing desk during a working "white collar" day has enormous long term health benefits.

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Dell EMC Education Road Show

Dell EMC Logo Standing Desk Road ShowToday we were invited by DELL EMC UK education department to join their road show in Manchester and showcase the new EIGER Junior standing desk to their customers.

IT and EIGER'S work perfectly together especially with the latest Dell Chromebooks that were on display.

IT and sitting are in the DNA of most people and this needs to change. 

Wouldn't it be fantastic to have a new generation of children entering the workplace knowing that using technology doesn't mean sitting all day.

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Children become less active from the age of just seven, major study finds

Children sitting using technologyChildren are entering a “tragic decline” from the age of just seven, with activity levels dropping long before they leave primary school, new research suggests.

Fitness experts said British pupils were entering a state of digital dependence which would shorten lives, with sedentary lifestyles becoming the norm long before children reached adolescence. The Gateshead Millenium Cohort study tracked more than 500 children for eight years, with trackers measuring activity levels.

Until now, efforts to improve uptake of sport and fitness have assumed that the significant slump in activity comes with puberty, especially with girls.

But the new study shows a sharp drop in activity levels between the ages of seven and nine, among boys and girls, with a decline continuing into adolescence.

At the age of seven, the average boy was moderately or vigorously active for one hour 15 minutes a day, the study found, dropping to one hour 10 minutes by the age of nine, and just an hour by the age of 12. By the age of 15, the figure is just 51 minutes, the research shows.

Seven-year-old girls had such activity levels for 63 minutes a day, dropping to 56 minutes by the age of nine, and 47 minutes by the age of 12. At 15, the average girl is active for just 41 minutes daily, the tracking devices found.

Much of the damage was caused because of the amount of time children spent on smartphones and computers, as well as being driven to school instead of walking, experts said.

Jack Shakespeare, Head of ukactive Kids, said: “Physical inactivity is society’s silent killer and the biggest tragedy is that it’s creeping up on our children before they’ve even left the playground.”

While extra funding for school sport was welcome, he said a wider “cultural shift” was needed to protect an inactive generation from a lifetime of health problems.

“It’s not just a case on buying more bats and balls for the PE cupboard, we have to embrace creative solutions and look at how we harness our digital dependence to build movement back into children’s lives, instead of taking it away,” he said.

And that’s where we step in with our EIGER Junior Standing Desk. To have a new generation of UK children going through education knowing there is a healthy alternative to the chair will have major benefits both short term and long term.

If sitting is the new smoking and inactivity a serious global health problem why do we make our children sit down for 4.5 hours every school day?

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Physical Activity Helps Bone Strength

Standing Desks and Bone StrengthThe University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada, and examined the prospective associations between physical activity, sedentary time, and bone strength during adolescence. High resolution peripheral quantitative computed tomography was used at distal tibia and radius in 173 girls and 136 boys. Four annual measurements were conducted at the tibia and radius (785 and 582 observations). MVPA and sedentary time were assessed with accelerometers.

The researchers found that MVPA was a positive independent predictor of bone strength and bone volume fraction at the tibia and radius, and of total area and cortical porosity at the tibia. MVPA was a negative predictor of load-to-strength ratio at the radius. Sedentary time negatively predicted total area at both sites and cortical porosity at the tibia, and positively predicted cortical thickness, trabecular thickness, and cortical bone mineral density at the tibia. Maturity-specific associations were seen for MVPA and sedentary time with bone parameters, with the strongest associations during early and mid-puberty.

"Our findings support the importance of physical activity for bone strength accrual and its determinants across adolescent growth and provide new evidence of a detrimental association of sedentary time with bone geometry but positive associations with microarchitecture".

Just some more facts why standing desks and long term health work together.

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