I want to talk about movement again today. I listened to a podcast this week about movement, and it had some really great points. We just really don’t move much anymore. Modern conveniences have created a sedentary culture.
I see tons of patients with shoulder problems. A lot of those are related to their posture and a lot of that is from spending too much time in front of computers and digital devices. Neck, shoulders, upper back ... all pay the price for sitting too long.
Lots and lots of jobs consist of sitting in front of a computer all day long. Even my job requires me to sit at a computer for long periods of time (Hello, medical documentation). We even advise people who work at computers to set an alarm to tell them to get up and move around every so often.
Modern conveniences have been built around not moving. Drive up for fast food. Eat in your car. Drive up to the pharmacy to pick up your medicine. Drive up to the bank to handle transactions.
We can call in our grocery order, pull into a designated spot and someone will bring everything we ordered and put it in our vehicle. I realize that can be a great blessing for those with limited mobility but I still advocate for getting out and going inside to do your shopping, even if it is in one of those motorized wheelchair-type things.
Even when we get the stuff home from the grocery store, we don’t have to do anything to it. We don’t have to wash it. We don’t have to chop it, peel it, or dice it. It’s already in a bag ready to eat. Instead of planning, assembling, and preparing dinner, you can get a complete meal at the grocery store that requires only that you heat it up.
And ordering things online. First, you sit in front of a computer, making your choices. You wait a couple of days and then it is delivered to your door. It couldn’t be easier. And it couldn’t require less movement unless somebody carried it from the porch into your house.
You can order take-out from lots of restaurants and don’t even have to go pick it up. Someone will pick it up and bring it to you. You could conceivably exist in today’s world without ever leaving the house.
Even the rear facing cameras on our cars can be seen as a deterrent to movement. You don’t even have to turn around to look behind you. (But don’t take mine away. It’s a blessing for senior citizens like me.)
When I was a child, we had three TV channels. And those channels signed off about midnight. Heavens forbid that the President was talking — it would occupy all three channels. And the remote was my Dad telling me to get up and change the channels. You actually had to touch the TV!
Today we have an almost infinite number of shows to watch, 24 hours a day. That means that you have the potential to sit for hours on a time, completely captivated by what is on the TV screen. For goodness sake, we had to suffer through the Lawrence Welk Show when I was growing up!
We need to move, not just when we exercise. We need to move throughout the day. Don’t drive around looking for the closest parking spot. Don’t take the elevator up one floor. Walk. Meander. Shop. Move!
You might find this hard to believe coming from me, but exercise is not the solution. Exercise without a life of movement is like taking vitamins and supplements to provide you with what you’re not getting from what you eat. If you are sedentary much of the day but spend an hour in the gym exercising, you just aren’t getting the movement that your body needs. You’ve got to move all day.