Children can be sitting for up to 85% of their day! This is massive when the majority of the day is spent in essentially a very unhealthy position. How do we counter this? Essentially I see children losing all their “primal” movements, floor based postures and the ability to do a flat foot squat like toddlers that seemed so natural at the time.
Research suggests even with periods of intense activity, it is still not undoing the negative impact of sitting. It has been called an epidemic by various authors and has been said to have longer-term health impacts worse than smoking.
With sitting they tighten through the front of their hip capsules throwing their weight forward over their knees and ankles creating an increase in tendonitis in sports and conditions like Osgood Schlatter’s and Sever’s disease which is more and more common. If I can teach a child strategies to retrain their squat and open up their hips they will do very well. Sitting is the complete antagonist of this, so we have to minimize or modify how long they do this for.
As an osteopath of 20 years I have thoroughly enjoyed helping my patients and the community. I love trying to impact and make change on their lifestyle and give them longer term sustained, more fulfilling health.
My real passion lays in helping kids as their potential for change is far greater and theoretically I can impact on the rest of their lives.
So on the back of fantastic research completed in Australia and abroad the last 5 years there is ample literature to show the benefits of trying to reduce the frequency and duration of time children spend sitting. There is a clear shift in the corporate workplace for adults to stand, why not for kids? Any benefit from standing desks for children may affect the rest of their life.
We all must acknowledge the increase of sitting time in our children as the intent on “screen time” has shifted massively in the last 10 years. Whether it be TV, Tablet or phone, the “banana back” slump is becoming the norm.
- Lowers calorie expenditure
- Effects sugar and insulin metabolism
- Causes orthopedic or musculoskeletal issues all while they are growing which naturally translates into adulthood
- Leads to poor breathing patterns, which may affect fatigue, concentration and potentially learning outcomes.
We must Stand Up for our Children’s health!!
UpStanding Kids ( www.upstandingkids.org ) is a not for profit organization aimed at getting standing desks into schools. The interest thus far has been amazing and we have support at all levels within the community. Backed by parents this should be suggested to principals, councils, teachers which will hopefully allow our contact and presentation in whatever format suits the school. We will also be seeking an audience with education departments and government to effect policy and funding. We are aligning with key researchers to try and help spread the message of their fantastic work. In time we will be seeking donations to help fund this strategy.
We would love further volunteers who have expertise in not for profit sector and its success.
- Marketing and social media usage
- Governments sector and lobbying
Thus far have found only one suitable desk that meets the benchmarks of what we feel will back the research done. You can discover all the key benefits and features below.
UpStanding kids is ready and willing to fulfill the demand associated with what could be a far reaching wide reform for children’s health. It is simply the easiest way to improve all facets of their health.
You can find us on facebook here https://www.facebook.com/pages/UpStanding-Kids/317385038435302
or visit our website here www.upstandingkids.org
This article was written by Peter Parker Founder of Upstanding Kids