How much time do you spend sitting down?
How often do you get up to stretch and move around?
Everyone spends a lot of time sitting these days, whether at school, work, or hanging out. Sitting is normal, but sitting for hours without moving is not. How we sit matters.
Think about a cat or dog, and the way that they move around. A cat might spend most of its day sleeping, but it still wakes up pretty regularly to have a stretch, wander around, and find a new position.
When we don’t move, the movement of our blood changes too. That means that our bodies might not get the oxygen and nutrients needed to do the things we want to do. Sitting for too long can also change the muscles and ligaments in our bodies, making it easier to get injured because we’re not as flexible. Over time, we can even end up in pain.
That’s why it’s important to break up time spent sitting with active breaks.
How many hours do kids in
Kelowna spend sitting?
The average daily sitting time is about 8 hours a day for elementary kids during the school week and about the same on the weekends.
Middle schoolers spend an average of 9.5 hours per day sitting during the week, but only spend 8.5 hours sitting on the weekend.
But there is a BIG range too. Some kids sit a lot —up to 10.9 hours per day for elementary kids and 13.8 hours for middle schoolers! Some kids hardly sit at all — as little as 4.4 hours a day for elementary students and 6.6 hours a day for middle school kids.
Kelowna kids are really good at taking breaks from sitting. Most “sitting sessions” (~70%) are less than 30 minutes long before a break. On average, 1 hour of sitting during the week and 2 hours at the weekend lasts between 30 minutes to an hour. There are kids you sit for more than 2 hours non-stop, but this isn’t great for their health.
How long should you sit before you need a break?
Remember cats and dogs?
We need to think about how much time we spend sitting and try not to sit for more than 30 minutes before taking a break and moving around. Even if it’s just standing up and stretching for a few minutes or going to grab a drink, that little bit of extra movement is really important.
What does all this mean?
Sitting isn’t a bad thing, but it is important to think about how long it’s been since your last break and to get up and give your body a rest and something new to do every 30 minutes.