It’s Movement Monday! If you sit for most of your workday, you are at high risk of developing “Dead Butt Syndrome”.
The most common negative health impacts of prolonged sitting are now widely known.
These include: increased risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, depression, dangerous changes in blood lipid profile, weight gain, and negating the positive impacts of exercise.
Additionally, prolonged sitting also has a seriously negative impact on your ability to move effectively.
That’s the main issue we will cover today.
One of the conditions that have been rising steadily over the past few decades is called Dead Butt Syndrome (DBS). With all the sitting at home this past year and decreased activity levels (in many populations), DBS has increased dramatically during this pandemic.
According to the Cleveland Clinic, DBS is one of the non-technical terms for gluteal tendinopathy of gluteus medius tendinopathy (GMT).
GMT shows up as lateral hip aches or pain that sometimes feels like a deep bruise. This pain is often greater in the morning and stems from a variety of causes.
It should be noted that not everyone (me included) agrees with this definition of DBS. I agree that GMT is a real and frustrating condition (I’ve had it myself), but I feel that DBS is a completely different thing and doesn’t need to involve pain.
For me, Dead Butt Syndrome is the human body’s direct adaptation to our modern lack of movement, specifically in the form of prolonged sitting. It’s the real-world impact of “use it or lose it”.
When you sit all for prolonged periods of time, your gluteal (butt) tissue is statically compressed, there is minimal blood flow and almost no neural impulses to stimulate the tissue. This creates a situation where the brain and muscles begin to “disconnect”.
They don’t physically disconnect, but they essentially “forget” how to activate properly. The result is that you become less proficient at doing the basic movements you need to get through each day. This includes walking, climbing stairs, bending, squatting, lifting, twisting, bracing your core, and more.
When the function and capacity of these essential movements decrease, we are naturally less effective in our activities while also at greater risk of pain and injury.
As functional movement coaches, my team and I see DBS in action on a daily basis. Often clients will come to a training session looking for a workout, and DBS requires that we spend 15-20 minutes “reconnecting” their brain and muscles, particularly the hips, glutes, and core, to enable them to be useful in the workout.
Failing to re-link this neural connection is a recipe for disaster and a huge factor in the number of aches, pains, and injuries people experience when exercising.
It’s as simple as this…
At the fundamental level, the human body was meant to move. Failing to move it at consistent intervals each day means we lose function, capacity, and quality of life.
That’s physiology 101 and something that people forget when working at a computer all day.
The great news is that there is a simple solution to overcome DBS and prevent the majority of the negative health benefits that are ravaging society these days.
GET OFF YOUR BUTT AND MOVE!
Yes. It’s that simple.
Literally and figuratively get off your butt!
Get out of the sitting position on a regular basis. Sitting isn’t a bad thing, prolonged sitting is the issue.
Every 20-30 minutes, stand up and move, stretch, activate or exercise.
Even 10-15 seconds can make a positive difference. Ideally, aim for 30-60 seconds a couple of times per hour.
It doesn’t even have to be complicated.
Set a recurring timer. When it beeps, do this:
- STAND up
- ACTIVATE your muscles (contract/relax multiple times)
- MOVE your joints through their full range of motion
- REPEAT at least once each hour throughout your entire day
That’s it. You now know the foundation of your health plan in place.
From here, you can add extra items such as increasing your heart rate, challenging muscle force output or improving mobility through various exercises, activities, skills, and drills.
However, without your S.A.M.R foundation, you will constantly be plagued with PREVENTABLE aches, pains, and illness.
As always, the choice is yours. YOU are in control of your mindset, actions, and health.
The information is free. It’s available in this post (and elsewhere). It just requires that you DO IT…consistently!
Set that timer and get to it! Reply back to let me know how the first day of practice goes. 🙂
If you are ready to make this change and want help implementing it to get faster results with less frustration, just email firstname.lastname@example.org. I would love to work with you.
Have an amazing week!