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Extreme Makeover: Office Edition

Denver employers: The office is slowly killing your staff. Follow this guide to save your cubicle dwellers.

January 2014

From the dawn of man to the industrial revolution, when humans worked, they moved. Over the past 50 years, however, we’ve been letting our minds do the labor instead. In 1960, half of the nation’s occupations required moderate physical activity; today, that figure is just 20 percent. That’s a bad trend, the data suggest. Last year, a British Journal of Sports Medicine study equated the detrimental effects of sitting for long hours to smoking, and Diabetologia published a report linking sedentary behavior to increased risk of diabetes and cardiovascular-related death. Other experts—from those at the Mayo Clinic to the National Kidney Foundation—have put forward that shortened life expectancy and kidney disease could be attributed to sitting for extended periods. “The human body is designed to be mobile and flexible,” says JT Anderson, a Centennial lifestyle coach and doctor of chiropractic medicine who has worked with individuals and companies, including the Denver Broncos. “Unfortunately, with the advent of the computer, we’ve stuffed it into a chair for hours on end.” The cure? Employers should go beyond corporate wellness programs and introduce movement to the in-office routine. It’s nature’s espresso shot for sagging productivity, and it can help lower health-care costs, too.

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