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Creative Ways To Improve Kids "Physical Literacy"

The Telegraph have released an article this week showing 25 ways parents can get kids more active to stave off the summer holiday slum. That dreadful reduction in mobility that has been recently reported on by UKActive and Sport England.

Just surf through our previous blogs this month to see the stats on how little kids move during their summer holidays and it'll come as no surprise that they put on the pounds whilst staring at screens for 4 to 5 hours a day.

The Government’s new School Sport and Activity Action Plan is now pushing a term we've been writing about all quarter. Physical Literacy. According to the plan this encompasses enjoyment, motivation, competence, understanding and knowledge. Ensuring children can demonstrate all aspects of this means reportedly they will become happier, more resilient and more trusting of other kids. They also improve academically.



Sport England says making sport fun is key to getting kids motivated to get active. I know my own son jumped at the chance to attend mixed martial arts when I put it to him that he had been invited to attend "Ninja School".

So what are some of the suggested activities the Telegraph say you could inspire your kids with?

Well amongst the typical suggestions of outdoor sports and challenges they brought to light the LIdl Mudder challenge from the folk behind Tough Mudder. A yearly event for 5 to 12 year olds around the country to run an assault course designed just for kids. Race for Life is also hosting Pretty Muddy Kids, a 5k obstacle challenge on Aug 31 in Morden Park, London, and Sept 7 in Nottingham and Milton Keynes


Other unique suggestions for exercise include the world’s largest indoor inflatable assault course aptly named the "Monster" 

Folu Ososanya founder of children’s football coaching academy says exposing kids to professional sport early on lets feel more connected to it. So you could think about taking them to the game. I think giving them a team to support can have an amazing affect on their buy in to any sport. I'm sure many fully gown adults still support Man United because their favourite childhood colour was red. 

Another fitting suggestion to motivate the screen obsessed children in your household is to get the tech they love so much involved in the journey. This year’s Pokemon Go is Harry Potter: Wizards Unite which has kids exploring their locality casting spells and collecting artefacts. Apps such as Yoga for kids and Just Dance are also great motivators.

Amidst many other suggestions (Check them out here yourself) The article explains that bribery and blackmail are still a sure fire tactic to get your kids moving. There are also dance classes that teach the moves from the most popular game of the moment "Fortnite." I know a few kids who would fall over themselves to do anything Fortnite related so this could be gem for other parents with like-minded gamer children.



Theme park walks can find your kids clocking up the miles with a smile on their face so the lesson here is how we position the activity. Kids are interested in games and using their imaginations. Traipsing through harsh woodland is a lot more fun for my sons when we are hunting witches or taking their trusty teddies on a picnic at the top of a long hill walk.

Whatever your methods take some inspiration from anywhere and everywhere and get your kids used to moving and respecting their bodies. Studies have shown that children who are active turn into active healthier adults.


Standing desks are a great way to get kids moving whilst they are distracted performing an activity which motivates them such as colouring, drawing or magazine puzzles. Schools interested in undertaking a try before you buy Eiger Student Standing desk trial can apply through the short form here.

Recent studies have show that spending time on mobile phones for 5 hours a day means you are more likely to become obese and develop heart disease. So for your own sake and your kids try and put down the devices and get outside with your little ones this half term. Lets make the teaching of physical literacy start at home and hopefully see it continued back at school.

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Healthy Schools News Roundup. The Heat is On!

Healthy Schools News Roundup



Poorest children three times more likely to miss out on extra-curricular activities. 

Eleanor Busby from the independent has written about a new study this week which indicates children are three times less likely to do extra-curricular activity if they are from an impoverished family. This includes out of school sport amongst other activities such as music.

The study by the Social Mobility Commission is calling on the government to introduce a bursary scheme to change these rather disturbing figures. Now given the new PM's stance on education and 'not leaving anyone behind' being a big part of his patois in the run up to his taking the role it seems this kind of action might actually happen under the newly introduced New School Sport and Activity Action Plan being touted by the government as a fix for the shocking rise in childhood obesity.

Dame Martina Milburn, chair of the Social Mobility Commission, said: “It is shocking that so many people from poorer backgrounds never get the chance to join a football team, learn to dance or play music"

Former Education Secretary Damian Hinds added: “The more opportunities we make available to young people, the more chance they have of becoming well-rounded adults who can take on life’s challenges with confidence.”


Number of overweight children rises by a fifth because of lazy summer holidays spent staring at screens

Meanwhile this week the Telegraph have reported the number of overweight children has risen by a fifth because children becoming inactive during the summer holidays. Estimates indicate kids are staring at screens for up to 4 hours a day instead of getting outside and being active.

We also wrote about this last week here where we talk about the government’s plans to keep schools open during the holidays due to be implemented in the governments new plans.


Arrival of the long overdue healthy schools ratings scheme

Following criticism from numerous sources including non-other than celebrity chef Jamie Oliver details of the healthy schools rating scheme has finally seen some light two years later than proposed.

Quite importantly this has not been made mandatory a fact not missed by Jamie who very believes it should be. Schools are being encouraged to fill out a survey to acquire a rating and a report based on their answers with the highest scorers getting a gold silver and bronze award.

The 2016 child obesity plan first proposed the measure which should have up and running by Sept 2017. The major issues here are that its as pretty underwhelming initiative compared to the initial proposals. When originally developed as a strategy it was proposed that parents would be involved in the production the rating scheme for each individual school however now the only mention of a parent is that schools may wish to advise parents of what score they get after getting involved. Furthermore as it isn't mandatory only the schools who already have dedicated themselves to becoming healthier are likely to voluntarily put themselves into the scheme. Until all schools have to it would be likely that schools will mostly just end up with high scores as they wont be entering the scheme if they expect anything less.  Sadly it seems this is now a nice idea poorly executed that won't be making the waves it was conceived to do.



Ofsted Chief Inspector says pupil’s wellbeing at risk as sports are being squeezed out the curriculum.


Ofsted’s chief inspector spoke to the Observer this week and said it is essential that schools leaders include sport and exercise in a balanced education and that Ofsted would begin recognising schools that offer sport and exercise (in and out of school) in a new regime they intend to introduce in September.

“Schools that offer children a broad, balanced education, including plenty of opportunities to get active during the school day and through extracurricular activities, will be rewarded under our new inspection regime.”

Boris Receives Nudge From The Youth Sport Trust


The Youth Sport Trust, A Director of the FA, and many other sport leaders have sent an open letter to Boris Johnson indicating that P.E. hours have received a huge cut since 2017 and that they want the next PM to demonstrate that the government is making the health and wellbeing of children in the country a priority amidst a decline in general mental and physical health culminating in the loss of 5 years estimated life spans for our children.

“physical education has been cut by more than almost any other subject, with over 51,000 hours of curriculum PE lost between 2010 and 2017”

You'll have to excuse the format but its been a hot week for health and education news with much to digest across the media but it does feel like an important week. One where with the new PM in place and lots of public mention of the need for sport and physical literacy for children in this country that perhaps the public perception on how important movement and activity is could be made to genuinely shift.

Let’s hope we all take heed and get more active with our kids and encourage our schools to do the same. The new plan pushed by the government has pledged £2 million Sport England funding to create 400 new after-school ‘satellite clubs’ to get more young people in disadvantaged areas active, as well as additional funding to better coordinate sport programmes and competitions for young people. So let’s make sure when these appear that we make use of them or they won’t be around for long.

 


Schools wishing to include more movement in their classrooms can integrate super movers  videos into their lesson plans, increase their pupils dedicated activity time and reduce the use of solitude booths for SEN and badly behaved kids in favour of more holistic approaches to discipline.

There is no one fits all answer for schools wanting to get more active but certainly opting in to the Healthy Schools rating scheme seems like a great starting point. Many schools have seen benefit by introducing flexible seating options such as Eiger student standing desks. A trial for any school wishing to try before you buy is available here. 

Guidance on the healthy schools rating scheme is available here.

Have a great week and remember when you'rew out and about getting active, please wear sunscreen.

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Movement Teaching Kids Tolerance

Whilst both groups clearly benefit from the well-established benefits of physical activity, children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) tend to experience poorer physical health than children without.

Evidence suggests an improvement in mental well-being, concentration and general academia for SEND kids who experience physical activity. Perhaps even more importantly essential life skills such as how to make and keep friends, social cues and sharing and communication are boosted for SEND kids when they undertake physical activity with non-SEND kids.

The benefits are two-fold as Non SEND children benefit from the experience also by developing a sense of compassion, tolerance and sensitivity to social diversity.



Studies have highlighted a need for teachers, coaches and schools to better understand how to include their SEND children in physical activity. Meanwhile local communities are struggling to properly advertise any local opportunities for physical activity that is inclusive for SEND children.

The Daily Mile is one way in which schools are trying to integrate inclusive exercise into their students’ lives but some schools are also including Student Standing Desks into their classrooms as a way to offer an alternative means of movement and physical literacy for their children. Many schools report that whilst these can be excellent resources for non-SEND kids many have seen increased benefit for children with a range of disorders and disabilities including Attention Deficit Disorder.



Jo Rees, Assistant Headteacher, ARK Atwood Primary Academy

So hope is not lost for schools looking to improve their in house physical activity provision. The Youth Sport Trust offer extensive support and resources for schools looking to upskill their staff in being able to support SEND and non-SEND kids in the physical activity and sport. Their website states;


The full YST strategy


"82% of schools and children's groups reported that the availability of appropriate facilities or equipment was a key barrier to participation by children with disabilities."

"We are a national children's charity passionate about creating a future where every child enjoys the life-changing benefits that come from play and sport."

The BBC has also teamed up with the Premier League to create Super Movers which is designed to encourage primary school children to get more active.


There is also a great site called Parasport which can help you to find sports or activity based clubs in your area. https://parasport.org.uk/

If you want to talk to us about including standing desks in your classroom then just drop us a message into the chat on the website or visit this trial page to sign up for a try before you buy on student standing desks. 

 

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British + Irish Girls Say No To Sport During Puberty

A unprecedented global survey of 14,000 women by researchers at St Mary’s University, Twickenham has shown that British and Irish school girls lose interest in sport when they hit puberty which can be attributed to body changes, low confidence, unflattering sports kit and a feeling that sport was “not cool” or fun.

The figures show two out of five of them shun sport during puberty often using sick notes citing their periods as the reason not to participate. One P.E. teacher described how often this occurred as “ridiculous”.

 

Young girls are abandoning sport during puberty

 

The falloff stats are far more severe than anywhere else in the world which can be linked to English and Irish attitudes towards the sometimes sensitive subject and shines a light on a dire need to de-stigmatise periods whilst motivating our young people to embrace active lifestyles given the obesity epidemic reportedly straining the NHS to the tune of 6 Billion a year.


Dr Bruinvels

One of the researchers and international cross country runner Dr Georgie Bruinvels has written account of her own experiences as a young runner dreading having her period on a race day. ( Scroll down to the case study here.) She explained she has used her own experiences as a motivator for the research and in her capacity as a co-creator of the FitrWomen App which helps women individualise their training regimes around their menstrual cycles.

“One side effect of that is the bleed but a whole other aspect of it is about what is going on with the body all the time. Athletes are suppressing their bodies by taking the birth control pill to stop this natural and normal process which we should be embracing.” Said Bruinvels

Mims Davies, the sports minister, said the findings highlighted the need for the Government to address participation levels among teenage girls. “This is further concerning evidence of the challenge we must address” They have previously rolled out the “This Girl Can” campaign which inspired 3.9 million women and girls to get active however it seems that young people are moving away from sport in droves during the transitional time in their adolescence.

 



“I am working with the sector to make sport and physical activity both enjoyable and engaging for young people of all abilities and backgrounds.

The survey also illustrated that women found exercise to offer great relief to the pain and other side effects of menstruation and according to Bruinvels women actually show increased ability to exercise when menstruating.

A Sports England survey showed that 2.3 million children do less than 30 minutes of activity each day. If you want to help young people to embrace movement and push back against the growing trend to abandon physical activity during puberty you can consider fostering a culture of movement with a standing desk trial in your school just fill out this 60 second form to get started.


You May Also Want To Read:

One in Eight Kids Don't Play Outside

Junk Food Adverts OUT, Veg Power IN. UK Standing Up For Kids Health


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Sitting Kills! Bring Forth 6 Life Saving Stretches.

The Telegraphs Max Lowery Author of the 2 Meal Day provided his audience this week with a video illustrating 6 super stretches designed to combat the inactivity and strain one can feel from extensive sitting in the workplace.

As many of our blogs are designed to show you, there are innumerate ill health conditions associated with sitting for 7 to 12 hours a day and Max's stretches and workplace tips are just one way you can aim to counteract that.


Max Lowery Demonstrates Stretches to combat a sedentary lifestyle


As I have explained in previous blogs, the act of standing at a desk itself does very little more to keep your body healthy, than the act of sitting all day if the said standing is fixed and equally immobile. Our standing desks do however help the owner build a culture of movement into their lives whilst battling several posture and alertness problems at the same time. They help users to integrate more movement and benefit from being upright whilst feeling generally healthier and happier. Standing encourages you to take small walking breaks and small stretching breaks all can help fight the demon in the room. Inactivity.

Here's Max's video and his website in which he explains his strategy to combat the sedentary lifestyle and offers constructive tips such as taking your trainers to work so you can throw some running into your commute home.

 

 

Max writes for the Telegraph, is the author of 2mealday which promotes intermittent fasting and has social links here:

Instagram Facebook Twitter

Max writes on his website; "Following these simple steps over time can have a profound effect on your overall flexibility, mobility and quality of life. Small changes over time reap long lasting benefits."

 

You may also want to read: 70,000 Deaths A Year Caused by Sitting

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US Schools Spending on Standing Classrooms

An American public school district has spent over $30,000 on flexible seating in the process of revising their campus facilities. School board records show that Illinois based David Jakes Designs has been paid that much as a consultant plus the cost of the furniture itself to provide expertise and design advice to schools such as Union High School on implementing flexible seating options.


One reporter for The Columbian wrote about her experience visiting the school. She describes the classrooms as being akin to a tech company start-up with students on couches, leaning over small circular tables and using standing desks. This is yet another example of how creative seating options are gradually becoming commonplace in American education facilities. We recently wrote about how one Californian elementary school has become entirely standing.

Recent research demonstrates that standing students engage more, are more productive and stay on-task for longer in the learning space.

“It gives students much more choice to say ‘I need to do this for my learning today” Jakes said


Woodland Intermediate School embraced flexible seating back in 2016 They integrated talks to students from occupational therapists who educated students on the "alert program" and to be "self-aware of their bodies" allowing them to try alternate seating options before choosing what they like the most at the beginning of classes. Results were overwhelmingly positive. Students were excited to go to class, they found their learning spaces fun, exciting and they were more relaxed.

“This isn’t some sort of magic pill, but activity and movement in the classroom during schoolwork can have a big impact,”

Mark Benden, Texas A&M University


Bendan is published in the American Journal of Public Health with a study that illustrates standing desks can slow the increase in elementary school children’s B.M.I. by 5% - Body Mass Index is an early indicator of obesity.

Standing Schools report more engaged and productive students

Childhood obesity has become an epidemic in the U.K. More than 24,000 children in England are now considered severely obese whilst 116,000 children are deemed obese. UK public health officials and government initiatives have put preventative methods at the top of the NHS agenda to counteract general ill health and the obesity problem.


UK schools can now access sports premium funding in order to facilitate the purchase of standing desks for their classrooms.

Over a hundred UK schools have introduced standing desks as a result of successful Eiger Standing Desk trials. Your school can try student standing desks for negligible cost by filling in this form. you may also wish to ask us about financial support options to implement creative seating.

 

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Office Workers Sit More Than OAPs, Clocking Up Nearly 200,000 Minutes A Year.

The average office worker sits down more than an Old Age Pensioner. White collar workers are on their bottoms for an average of 9 hours a day healthcare studies show. That’s 540 minutes a day…a staggering 16425 minutes a month. Nearly 200,000 Minutes a year.

29% of us sit for up to half an hour daily on our way to work. Whilst a further 27% sit for up to an hour a day on their commute. We often then work sat down, take our breaks sat down, before commuting home on our bottoms. A third of us are then sitting between 4-6 hours in the evening and weekends.



After this? Well we go and have a lie down to go to sleep. Think about that for a moment. Can you section your day up from the moment you get out of bed and honestly say you’re not sitting for a massive proportion of it? Health experts vehemently agree that 9 hours a day (on average) is too much.

One study interviewed 2000 workers and found that 2/3rds of people didn’t consider themselves “happy” about the amount of time they spent sitting. 73 % of participants demonstrated musculoskeletal problems such as back, neck and shoulder pain.

Sitting is heavily associated with numerous illnesses. The NHS has written extensively about why sitting is bad for us, and they recommend at least 150 minutes a week doing exercise. 

Studies have linked excessive sitting with being overweight and obese, type 2 diabetes, some types of cancer, and early death.

Next year you have a choice to make. Are you going to be one the 2/3rds who aren’t happy with their sedentary lifestyle or are you going to join the growing number of people who are actively increasing their movement and integrating standing into their social and work lives to make their whole life longer, healthier and happier.

The beginning of a new year is great time to take stock and decide if you want to make some positive changes. Go ahead and set some goals. You could get a standing desk, or get an apple watch to remind you to stand, or just get out of your chairs and walk around. Whatever works for you, next year we urge you to simply GET UP.

The NHS has a helpful live well guide that is a road map for how you could be healthier at work. You can find it here.

Be your best version of you.

 

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UK Firms Adopt 4 Day Working Weeks, Report Increased Productivity

Brits work some of the longest work weeks in Europe and UK firms are beginning to buck that trend by offering their staff 4 day working weeks.

By reducing lunch hours and annual leave to 45 mins and by 20% respectively Gloucester based outfit Radioactive PR have been able to adopt a 4 day working week and MD Rich Leigh says of his newly reinvigorated staff base “There are two ways to make money in my line of work,” he says, “retain clients and get new ones. Miserable, tired staff can’t do either.”

Last year, more than half a million UK workers were signed off with work related stress or anxiety. Nick White, MD of Iwantastandingdesk.com said “encouraging good mental health in the workplace is absolutely imperative. Britain are notoriously behind trend internationally when it comes to integrating good work/life balance and positive healthy culture into their workplaces.”

“We work with a large number of companies who are invested in their employee’s well-being and frequently report to us that integrating standing desks, reduced work hours and other healthy work space initiatives result in their teams outputting higher quality work and demonstrating incredible loyalty. Not to mention all these measures increase recruitment quality as companies are striving more and more to improve their in-house offering to attract the best talent.”

France recently made it illegal for companies to expect their workers to answer emails out of hours but Britain just hasn’t kept up with our European neighbours and often work long hours often unpaid averaging 10 hours overtime a week and only 34 minute lunch hours.

The EU working time directive sets a limit of 48 working hours a week. Britain is the only EU member that allows workers to opt out of this and work longer hours. Trade unions however believe this is subject to “widespread abuse.”

Videogame companies are one of the worst culprits for insisting on crunch development cycles where staff often report on spending weeks to months not seeing their family’s due to the incredible pressure to meet deadlines. This is frequently regarded as “normal part of the job” but is affecting 76% of the industry despite being clearly unsustainable and damaging to long term productivity. According to research some workers report bouts of depression and low morale following the tech industries notorious crunch periods.

Standing meetings are often shorter, allowing firms to reduce wasted workplace  time which research has shown is as damaging to productivity as cannabis smoking.

The Green party and Frances O’Grady, the general secretary of the Trades Union Congress have both campaigned for the implementation of a 4 day working week citing increased automation as an opportunity for companies to spread the benefits of increased profits to its staff base. Should this begin to occur critics might argue that 4 day work weeks as a result of automation might inflate into the development of worklessness as companies begin to realise they need their staff base less and less.

Mark Price former MD of Waitrose believes the increase of the 4 day working week sends the wrong message and suggests that “work is bad and should be done less” he also believes that the public sector can ill afford to reduce working weeks in line with the private sector without increasing taxes to cover this. “I can’t imagine there is much of an appetite for that.”

Should 4 day work weeks be adopted in private sector could that make working for vital public services less appealing and have a negative impact to recruitment in services such as councils and NHS?

Wherever you land on the subject, there appears to be a need to improve our approach to work place health.

Crunch is bad for mental health but can we be more productive by working less? Latest research from Perpetual Guardian, a wealth management firm seems to suggest so as they report an increase in productivity by 24% in firms that take up the 4 days weeks. Following in his firm’s footsteps, Gloucester Managing Director Leigh asks the question “why not give it a try?”.

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New Research Shows Gym Won't Make You Fit

Professor Stuart Biddle of Loughborough University has undertaken a research study which followed six people over a year as they tried to keep up with regular exercise by attending a gym. His results determined that we would all benefit from building regular exercise into our daily routines instead of attempting to maintain a gruelling gym routine as 9 out of 10 people quit the gym only 6 weeks after joining even when subscribing for a whole year.

Professor Biddle speaking at the British Psychological Society's annual conference at Imperial College, London said "We have got an obesity problem because we have lost those little bits of everyday activity that we used to have, like walking to the shops or to work.”

 

"People's' engagement with exercise will fluctuate as a result of other events in their lives. Structured exercise at a gym can be too disruptive to everyday life.

"It's important to build exercise into your daily routine - there are many other alternatives to gym membership.”

“Research has shown that standing 3 or 4 hours a day would be activity equivalent of running 10 marathons a year.” Nick White, MD of iwantastandingdesk.com said “This only further cements our opinion that its time people consider spending some of that yearly gym membership money on a quality standing desk that they won’t want to walk away from in 6 weeks’ time.”

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NHS To Embrace Preventative Innovations To Prevent Illness

Matt Hancock, UK Health Secretary Will today speak at the Annual Meeting of the International Association of National Public Health Institutes to outline his strategy to include prevention as a priority in future NHS budgets and methods.

Integrating technology such as apps that consider lifestyle and location and other prevention methods such as standing desks, free fruit and lend a bike schemes in the workplace are all part of Mr Hancock’s new plan to reduce the burden on the NHS by investing in prevention rather than cure.


Ministers currently spend £97 billion on treating disease and only £8bn on preventing it.

The Sun reports that in his statement Matt Hancock will say “It can’t be right that today, in England, a boy born in the poorest parts of our country will die nine years earlier, and live 19 more years in poor health, than a boy born in the richest areas.


“That’s why prevention matters. That’s why we need a new 21st century focus on prevention.”

The Sun goes on to report that a green paper, titled “Prevention is better than cure”, will outline the vision for a “new 21st century focus on prevention”.

Standing Desks are an excellent measure for maintaining good health and amongst other preventative innovations are encouraged under the governments new plans to improve general health in the workplace.

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Child Obesity Rates Soaring Shows New NHS Data

More than one in five children are considered obese by the time the leave primary school according to new official NHS data.


In just over a decade child obesity rates have risen more than a third and are now at a record high. More than 24,000 children in England are now considered severely obese whilst a staggering 116,000 children are deemed obese.
Statistics captured are from the national childhood measurement programme.

"Obesity is a problem that has been decades in the making - one that will take significant effort across government, schools, families and wider society to address.” - Public Health Minister Steve Brine explained how the government has already removed a high level of sugar from children’s diets by enacting the sugar tax which has funded vital school sports and breakfast programmes and they have bold plans to half the amount of childhood obesity by 2030 by implementing Chapter Two of the Childhood Obesity Strategy such as preventing junk food advertising on television before 9pm.


Children with obesity face four times the risk of developing type 2 diabetes according to a study published in the Journal of the Endocrine Society. Whilst 41 Million children worldwide are regarded as obese according to research. Nick White Managing Director of iwantastandingdesk.com reflected on the growing trend “Without additional activity being including into daily learning hours, childhood obesity is going to become a problem at an educational level. Obesity becoming prevalent means lower activity levels and productivity reducing primary schools educational outcomes.”

Iwantastandingdesk.com offer standing desk schools trials here – Standing desks in schools encourage movement, improve productivity and help fidgety children engage whilst remaining active.

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Matt Hancock, UK Health Secretary says Physical Activity is a “Miracle Cure”

UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock who tomorrow will announce a new health initiative urging employers to push movement in the workplace, says he believes it’s the duty of schools, GPs, teachers and employers to promote daily activity as he describes standing desks and movement as a “miracle cure” that cuts the risk of many illnesses.

“Our message should be that movement is medicine.” Health Secretary Matt Hancock said at the International Society for Physical Activity and Health Congress in London.

Matt Hancock, Health Secretary

Employers are encouraged to build movement into their workers days by buying them standing desks and encouraging standing for meetings. The health secretary who himself uses a standing desk has made the plea in a bid to counter the ever growing issue of sedentary lifestyles lowering our productivity and importantly our lifespans.

“Research has shown that sitting for eight hours a day could increase the risk of premature death by up to 60 percent” reports Laura Donnelly, Health Editor of The Daily Telegraph

The health secretary has encouraged companies to integrate sit-stand desks such as iwantastandingdesk.com’s range of Jack Desks and to avoid seated meetings where possible.

Mr Hancock explained that not only were these measures designed to encourage benefits to health but also productivity and multiple other gains.

“Workplaces can make a difference; encouraging breaks, offering standing desks, having standing meetings…I know from personal experience that having a standing desk can help you get some exercise and improve your productivity”

Not only schools and businesses but GPs are also encouraged by Mr Hancock to push the benefits of standing and movement. “Doctors should not be afraid to tell patients that they need to be more active,” he told the London summit.

The health secretary has since urged businesses to also offer free fruit to reduce the burden on the NHS and encourage healthy living.

 

Sources: The Daily Telegraph , Daily Mail

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Sitting Linked to Nine More Cancers

Couple sat watching TVSitting for hours on end is linked to nine more cancers than we thought, according to the cancer expert who is helping to re-write the exercise guidelines. Charles E Matthews, an epidemiologist at the National Cancer Institute, warns we need more physical activity than we thought - but more importantly, we need to sit less.

Just one hour of TV a day puts even the most active of us at a higher risk of not just breast and colon cancer - which we already knew - but also nine other cancers including lung and head or neck.

"Watching TV is the major competitor to going out and being more active," he told the American Association for the Advancement of Science conference in Austin, Texas. "This is where moderate activity like a brisk walk or things around the house come in. Anything that is not sitting is good."

Now we're not suggesting standing and watching the TV at home but if you've been non-sedentary at work using a standing desk you can afford some rest time watching your favourite TV programme for an hour or so!

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Inactive UK Business

Hot Desk AreaToday we dropped off two EIGER Pro Standing Desks to one of the UK's leading employers to trial in their headquarters. They will be used in flexible working areas (hot desks) where most employees are laptop based. This is perfect for the EIGER Pro.

We couldn't believe the size of the car park and it was totally full, implicating that most employees sit down to get to work. The lifts were in full use and every office area we saw was full of inactive computer workers, sat down.

This is the norm but when you see it on such a large scale it's frightening.

When we told a few of the employees they were twice as likely to have a cardio health issue compared to a active manual worker they were shocked. They couldn't believe that the effects of just standing for 3 hours a day over a working year will burn more calories than running 10 marathons!

We've got a good feeling about this company and that active working will be met positively with the help of our EIGER Pro Standing Desk.

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Nick White December 05, 2017 2 tags (show) Add a comment

UKactive Urges Government Shake-up of Sedentary Office Culture

Tanni Grey ThompsonUKactive Chair Tanni Grey-Thompson appeared on international news network CNBC to urge the Government to tackle the ‘toxic’ toll of sedentary working cultures by incentivising employees to be active.

The legendary Paralympian and cross-bench peer noted that ‘physical inactivity costs the UK £20bn each year and is the cause of 37,000 premature deaths’ with desk-bound office culture fuelling the mounting inactivity crisis.

Statistics show that sitting at a desk for eight hours a day increases the risk of premature death by up to 60 per cent and is a major cause of a myriad of health problems.

Interviewed on major American news channel CNBC’s mid-morning show, Tanni called on the government to do more to promote workplace physical activity by incentivising active pursuits such as gym passes, fitness equipment and accessories.

Increasingly busy schedules for workers mean it’s tougher than ever to maintain an active lifestyle. Physical inactivity is one of the biggest drivers of ill-health, leading to high absenteeism rates (which cost the UK £29bn a year) and reduced productivity – which all conspire to hit bottom lines.

Tanni also urged the public to try and ‘take on the responsibility to get active’, through small or incremental lifestyle changes. This could be as little as ‘getting off the bus one stop early’ she said, or simply ‘walking between meetings’.

Less time sat at a desk has superb long term health benefits. Standing is a highly effective low level form of activity. So a standing desk makes perfect sense.

Do your job, run your business and improve your health at the same time! 

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Nick White August 14, 2017 1 tags (show) Add a comment
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