Sitting in conventional chairs causes most of the muscles in the body to “go dark”, that is, become metabolically inactive. This results not only in a decrease in the number of calories used, but fundamentally alters our basic biochemistry, resulting in deleterious cardiovascular and metabolic effects: increased blood pressure, increased levels of fasting glucose, triglycerides, and high-density lipoprotein are all associated with static sitting. Indeed, in epidemiologic studies (Biswas et al. Sedentary Time and Its Association With Risk for Disease Incidence, Mortality, and Hospitalization in Adults; Ann Intern Med. 2015;162:123-132 ) sitting still has been shown to be associated with increases in all-cause mortality and a host of other medical problems including cancer. Discouragingly and perhaps counterintuitively, the metabolic harms caused by passive sitting are not reversed by periods of vigorous activity; going to the gym will not undo the harm of passive sitting. There is some good news, however: it turns out that even modestly increasing the amount of activity involved in sitting may have large benefits: a recent study (Hagger-Johnson, Sitting Time, Fidgeting, and All-Cause Mortality in the UK Women’s Cohort Study. Am J Prevent Med; 50:154, 2016) found that those who simply fidget while sitting are largely protected from the harmful metabolic consequences of sitting. Although the research is not yet available, we believe that the increase in activity while sitting afforded by the QOR360 will provide important long term health benefits.

Return to Active Sitting FAQ