Movement Vs. Sitting

In one corner we have our physical bodies. We’ve been moving as nomads and hunter/gatherers for thousands of years. We then had an agricultural revolution where we were moving as we tended our farm. Working was more labor-intensive and required more physical movement. 

In the other corner we have the luxury of sitting. Within the last century, motorized transportation became widely used. In addition, technology has created sedentary jobs, and a vast part of our day is spent sitting while commuting to work, at work, and then resting at home.

Round 1. 

According to the United States Census Bureau, Americans spend roughly 100 hours a year driving to work. How long do you drive to work? Perhaps you work from home? If you drive more than 20 minutes to work, less than the average American one-way commute, or if you work from home, movement wins. If your commute is greater than 20 minutes, sitting wins.

Round 2.  

Bonnie Berkowitz and Patterson Clark of theWashington Post state that the average sit time at work for most Americans is 8 hours. What do you do? Perhaps you work in retail, construction, or as a Disney performer. If you sit less than 6 hours at work, congratulations, movement wins! However, if you work in an office, driving, or flying folks around, chances are you are sitting more than 6 hours at work; if that is the case, sitting wins. 

Round 3. 

 After a long day, we simply want to relax. You’ve earned it! It has been a long day. How do you relax and unwind? According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Americans average 5.3 hours of leisure time per day (4.8 hours on weekdays and 6.5 hours on weekends and holidays) and over half that is spent in front of the television. Most leisure time involves sitting. Active rest, like sports and exercise, averaged 37 minutes per weekday, compared to the whopping 156 weekday minutes spent watching TV. If you exercise for more than 30 minutes, whether morning or evening, movement wins. If you love TV, or reading in a cozy spot, sitting wins.