Gentle Jogger®: Don’t Sit Still®

Physical inactivity is a higher adverse risk to health than omission of an exercise regimen as recommended by the American Heart Association of at least 150 minutes per week of moderate exercise or 75 minutes per week of vigorous exercise (or a combination of moderate and vigorous activity). This relates to the much greater time expended on sedentary activity than fulfilling exercise goals.

Overall, young adults spend about 12 hours per day sedentary (physically inactive) whereas elderly adults remain sedentary even much longer. The major sedentary activity for American adults in the United States is television viewing, constituting about 5 hours per day with lesser times for viewing a computer screen, riding in a transportation vehicle, and dining at a table, In large population studies, prolonged sitting time increases risk of hypertension, diabetes type 2, heart disease, cancer, metabolic syndrome, and premature mortality. The negative health outcomes of increased sitting time add risk to health separate from the positive effects of physical activity.

Since physical inactivity is a major contribution to most non-communicable diseases and conditions, adapting a lifestyle of breaking up uninterrupted sitting every 20 minutes or so by bouts of walking for a few minutes is an obvious solution. Unfortunately, this method has not been widely utilized owing to the psychological resistance of humans to behavioral change no matter what the consequences. One might acknowledge that the “urge to sit” is part of a human’s make-up and attempts to reduce excessive sitting must incorporate sitting as a component of its remedy, an attribute of the Gentle Jogger®.

Prolonged sitting poses a risk to health because it promotes pooling of blood in the lower extremities that reduces friction from blood flowing over the inner lining (endothelium) of blood vessels thereby creating “endothelial dysfunction.” This lowers the level of key molecules produced by the body that prevent narrowing of blood vessels which in turn leads to accumulation of tissue-destructive, free oxygen radicals. The body movement produced by the Gentle Jogger® helps prevents this situation. It allows one to sit without guilts while watching television or a computer screen as effortless movements are received.

Sit or lie down and still reap the health benefits.

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