Workplace Workouts

More and more jobs are increasingly confined to sitting at a desk all day. This isn’t how it used to be. Americans are burning fewer calories than ever at work—so what can be done?


What’s the Latest Development?

Resent research indicates that Americans are more sedentary than ever when they are at work. The nation is losing many of the jobs that once kept us mobile. Tim Church, an exercise researcher at Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, "found that the number of people in jobs requiring moderate physical activity decreased from 48 percent in 1960 to 20 percent in 2008. The researchers also found a match between the drop in calories burned and increase in average weight during the past five decades."

What’s the Big Idea?

What can we do to stay healthy in the modern workplace? A number of machines and routines have been devised to keep our muscles moving, such as a small gear and wheels which requires you to pedal to use your mouse. But a simpler solution may be more effective, says Church: use a pedometer. "'You don’t appreciate how sedentary you are until you start using a step counter,’ Church said. The device can shock people into changing their behavior as well as help them achieve their fitness goals."

Related Articles

How schizophrenia is linked to common personality type

Both schizophrenics and people with a common personality type share similar brain patterns.

Mind & Brain
  • A new study shows that people with a common personality type share brain activity with patients diagnosed with schizophrenia.
  • The study gives insight into how the brain activity associated with mental illnesses relates to brain activity in healthy individuals.
  • This finding not only improves our understanding of how the brain works but may one day be applied to treatments.
Keep reading Show less

Human skeletal stem cells isolated in breakthrough discovery

It's a development that could one day lead to much better treatments for osteoporosis, joint damage, and bone fractures.

Image: Nissim Benvenisty
Surprising Science
  • Scientists have isolated skeletal stem cells in adult and fetal bones for the first time.
  • These cells could one day help treat damaged bone and cartilage.
  • The team was able to grow skeletal stem cells from cells found within liposuctioned fat.
Keep reading Show less

How exercise helps your gut bacteria

Gut bacteria play an important role in how you feel and think and how well your body fights off disease. New research shows that exercise can give your gut bacteria a boost.

National Institutes of Health
Surprising Science
  • Two studies from the University of Illinois show that gut bacteria can be changed by exercise alone.
  • Our understanding of how gut bacteria impacts our overall health is an emerging field, and this research sheds light on the many different ways exercise affects your body.
  • Exercising to improve your gut bacteria will prevent diseases and encourage brain health.
Keep reading Show less