7 Ways to Break the Sitting Habit

Are you sitting as you read this?

Do something for me, then, will you? Stand up for a minute. Stretch and move around. Do whatever feels good.

If you’re absolutely NOT getting up for whatever reason, then just wiggle around in your chair, okay. Move your back, shoulders, legs, arms, feet.

There. I bet you feel better now. Moving your body is sooo good for you.

You’ve heard the medical experts. They’re saying sitting is the new smoking. In other words, sitting for long stretches is bad for us. Our bodies are meant to move, not park for hours.

Fortunately, it’s easy to change the sitting habit. Just start by adding more movement throughout your day and week.

7 moves to try at work

Sprinkling in movement—any movement, even one-minute chunks—throughout your workday can make a big difference.

Businessman Midair in a Business Meeting

Love this guy’s enthusiasm for moving!

  1.  Stand up and stretch.
  2. Sit on a fitness ball instead of a traditional chair.
  3. Bend over and tie your shoes. Even this movement is beneficial for desk-jockeys.
  4. Take a short, quick walk.
  5. Kick off your shoes and strike a yoga pose.
  6. Take a mini-dance break. Go on! Shake it!
  7. Try “sweatworking.” Hit the gym, yoga studio, tai chi place, golf course or walking path with a colleague or client.

In your free time

Choose activities that get you moving and that you enjoy or that are otherwise rewarding. If you enjoy what you do, it will fit more effortlessly into your lifestyle.


Walking Poochie is good for you both.


  • Walking. Swimming. Touch football. Tennis. Jogging. Gardening. Yoga. Tai chi. Biking. Skating. Ping pong. Dog walking. Croquet. Horseback riding. Golfing. Dancing. Martial arts. Skiing. Volleyball. A “game” of yardwork with your family. Housecleaning to music. Kickboxing. Hula hooping. Hiking.

Then commit to it and schedule it!

Your turn

What’s one way you can add more movement to your day? Leave a comment below!

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  1. says

    Such a great reminder. Our bodies are not meant to sit for so long, but when you work from home, it can be challenging to get up and move. I always take my dog for a walk every morning and try to workout for a bit in the middle of the afternoon.

  2. says

    Love this! When I was in corporate I sat on a yoga ball for a few months (until it mysteriously popped…) and I walked the stairs or outside with my girlfriends every once in a while. I also teach & practice yoga — now that I’ve left my corporate job I make it a point to do an ab sequence of some kind every day and a handstand at home (or other inversion) and I make it into the studio a minimum of twice a week to practice (plus my teaching schedule). Thanks for sharing…. I wiggled my bum as I’m sitting down right now :)

    • says

      Jenny, so good to hear from you. I used one of those sitting balls, too. And mine also mysteriously popped–fortunately, I was not on it at the time. Love to hear that you teach and practice yoga. It’s awesome. Keep up your practice and thanks for being a yoga teacher!

  3. says

    thanks, marie, for a valuable reminder! before i even finished reading your first paragraph, i got myself up and did 15 plie squats with arm movements! i tend to tense up in my neck and shoulder muscles when i’m working at my desk (remnants of a car accident) and it’s important for me to do exactly what you’ve said. (i used to sit on a fitness ball chair – haven’t located it since our recent move though! i also love dancing and walking – short bursts or longer sessions.)

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