How To Get Your Kids To Ditch The iPad And Play Sports

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By Maria Myraine Yap

boyvideogameResearch shows that children with access to electronic devices are more likely to be overweight. A survey by REAL Kids Alberta showed that Grade 5 students with access to one electronic device were 1.47 times more likely to be overweight compared to kids with no devices in the bedroom. The number jumped to 2.57 times for kids with three devices.

If your kids aren’t exactly the athletic type, there is still hope. Love for sports can be taught given the proper encouragement and reinforcement. Sometimes, all it takes is a visit to the park or a cool outfit. For example, you can get your kids excited with custom socks from Strideline or a ticket to watch their favorite team. If they don’t have a favorite team? Take them to see your favorite team, mom & dad! Getting your kids to ditch the iPad for sports isn’t at all that difficult.

Not sure where to start? Here are some tips to get your kids away from the computer and into sports.

1. Find A Sport They Enjoy

It goes without saying (but we’ll say it anyway) that a sport needs to be enjoyable for kids to commit to it. If your child isn’t into the same sports as you are, don’t force it. Find your child an activity he/she truly enjoys. Chances are, they’ll be more excited for it.

2. Get Them Excited With Cool Gear

Every child wants to be the cool kid on the block. What better way to show up than with awesome gear? Great gear isn’t only cool, it boosts performance and reduces risk of injury as well. That’s a win-win in any book! Check out https://www.strideline.com/ for custom socks that will help them stand out from the competition.

3. Help Them Nurture Friendships With Active Kids

twokidsunParents often underestimate the power of peer influence and peer pressure. According to Judith Rich Harris, a leading American psychologist, external influences from friends, pop-culture, and society have a profound effect on a child’s growth and development.

That said, it is absolutely vital to surround your kids with good influences. Take them to little league and encourage them to join the school varsity team so that they can bond and cultivate friendships with other active children.

4. Lead By Example

Children tend to copy what they see. So if you spend your days in front of the TV or computer, expect your kids to do the same. Studies show that active parents make for active kids. Kids whose parents hit the gym at least twice a week grew up to be more active than those whose parents never exercised.

Committing to your child’s health and wellness means cultivating an environment conducive to exercise and recreation. Sometimes, that requires getting of the couch and breaking a sweat. Whether you like it or not, parenthood comes with certain responsibilities, one of which is being a positive role model to your children.

In this day and age of electronics and digital media, encouraging your children to play sports can be difficult. However, with the right environment and an active upbringing, sports can be an integral part of their everyday lives.

5 Ways Regular Exercise Benefits College Students

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By Tess Pajaron

teensThere is an array of ways that exercise is beneficial, and this is especially true when it comes to college students. And while it can be difficult to find time for exercise between classes and homework, it is well-worth the effort. Here are 5 ways regular exercise benefits college students.

Improves Memory

Research has shown that memory begins to decrease in people as young as twenty years old, and this progresses as we age. However, it is well-known that exercise can help improve memory and even prevent memory loss. It is for this reason that college students should fit exercise into their schedule. After all, when you are trying to learn new disciplines you will need to make sure that your memory is functioning at the highest level possible.

Increases Focus

Maintaining focus during class is vital to the learning process and without the proper level of attention grades can slip. Fortunately for college students, exercising regularly will help the brain to stay more focused. In fact, studies have shown that even light exercise, such as a twenty-minute bike ride, can actually help relieve the symptoms of Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and similar learning disabilities. This goes a long way in showing how powerful exercise can be in staying focused.

Improves Mood

When you are in college, having the proper mindset is crucial to success and exercising can actually improve one’s mood. There are certain chemicals that are produced by the brain that affect our mood, such as dopamine and serotonin, and exercising helps to promote the release of these chemicals, which leads to an improved mood. And while maintaining high grades is important in college, so is meeting new friends, and there is a greater chance of being sociable when your mood is right.

Relieves Stress

It is no secret that stress can cause us to lose focus on the things that are most important to us, and for college students stress can be especially problematic. Similar to improving mood, exercise will reduce the amount of stress that the brain perceives by releasing natural stress fighting chemicals, which can help ease the mind. If you are attending a university and feel that you are becoming stressed for any reason, consider going for a short jog or a bicycle ride, and you will certainly feel stress levels begin to subside.

Promotes Brain Development

There is perhaps no greater benefit of exercise for college students than its ability to promote brain cell development. Exercise is noted for increasing the number of neurons, or braincells, and this bodes well for those in an environment where higher learning is taking place. Not only does exercise help in brain development, but it also increases the flexibility at which our brains access information. In laboratory tests on mice, this flexibility has been shown to improve the ability of mice in solving mazes and other cognitive tests.

College is often regarded as one of the most important steps in a person’s life, and therefore it is necessary that students are able to function at the highest level possible. To increase the potential of students while in college it is recommended that they exercise regularly. Exercising will help to increase the level of focus within the brain, while at the same time, drastically improving one’s mood. In addition, staying active will lower the amount of stress that the brain perceives and this is vital in limiting external distractions. Furthermore, exercise promotes brain development by allowing for added flexibility and thus improving cognitive processes. If you are a student in college, keep in mind these 5 ways that regular exercise will be beneficial.

– With a background in business administration and management, Tess Pajaron currently works at Open Colleges, Australia’s leading online educator. She likes to cover stories in careers and marketing.

Pulmonary Embolism

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By Rebecca Kennedy

seniormanRight around the same time as you retire, your chances in getting pulmonary embolism, or PE, increase dramatically. PE occurs when an artery is blocked in the lungs. The most common cause of blockage happens when blood clots in one of the deep veins in the legs and slowly travels up to the lungs where it is blocked by a smaller artery. There are, however, other less common ways to contract the disease such as cancerous tumors and excess fat being released into the bloodstream. Yet, before it gets to the point where PE surgery is required, there are several steps that one can take to inform themselves to combat and prevent this disease entirely.

Symptoms of PE

It is important to be cognizant of the symptoms some PE patients show, although picking up on these take some practice due to their subtleness. Unfortunately, it is possible that someone who has PE shows no signs of the disease. Here are some of the most common:

● Lightheadedness or dizziness
● Sharp chest pain worsening by deep breathing or coughing
● Increased heart rate
● Coughing up blood or a red/pink, foamy mucus
● Clammy or discolored skin
● Swelling of one leg

The Wells Score

The Wells Score is a concept created to determine the likeliness of having PE or not. Although there are several different models of the Wells Score, all of them are going to include these criteria in one way or another:

● Signs and/or symptoms of Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)
● Increased heart rate
● Hemoptysis
● Immobilization for at least three days or a surgery causing bedrest
● PE is the only diagnosis or is one of the most likely
● Previously diagnosed with either PE or DVT

Other questions may include whether or not a patient has had a cancerous tumor or air bubbles caused by a traumatic event or surgery.

The questions are valued on a scale that can be anywhere from -2 points to 3 points. Questions such as an increased heart rate can be 1.5 whereas previously having either PE or DVT can be 3 points. Generally, the outcomes are determined in a three tier model with having less than 2 points means that one is at low risk, 2-6 points one is at moderate risk, and finally more than 6 points meaning that one is at a high risk.

Testing

Depending on the results of the Wells Score come in one should look towards getting further testing done in order to figure a definitive result. Some tests that can be done to determine whether or not one has PE are x-rays, electrocardiogram, and a Venous Doppler study.

Fitness Is In The Joints

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seniorjoggerJust so we’re all clear on the function, purpose, and importance of joints, joints are the points at which your bones meet and hinge much like each axis between the door and its frame, and since ‘joints’ rhymes with ‘points,’ you’ll find that easy to remember. Their purpose is to maintain the connections of all segments of the body while allowing various forms of flexible movement. Most importantly, you need joints in order to run, jump, limbo, twerk, and what-have-you. Much of what you do, therefore, to stay fit or even to capitalize on your fitness requires healthy joints. Many people exercise by jogging, swimming, doing aerobics, doing pushups, or all of the above. No matter what means you choose to exercise and stay fit, bad joints can make it impossible.

One might say that your fitness hinges on the wellness of your joints (see what we did there?). Harvard Health Publications reports that arthritis affects 20% of the American populace, which is quite a sizable chunk—1 in 5. The significance of arthritis, though, isn’t just in how many people are affected but, rather, in how joint pain is as immobilizing as joint stiffness if not more so. You’ll find yourself unable to be active either way, and there are loads of conditions that include joint pain in their myriads of symptoms. Anyone who has experienced these things can tell you that you don’t realize how important your joints are until something hinders your use, and you’ll find that staying active can become next to impossible due to discomfort or stiffness in joints that you’ve never once considered, which is why joint wellness is one of the most critical facets of fitness.

In order to make fitness easier on yourself in the future, it is incumbent upon you that you keep good control of your weight. Being overweight and especially being obese has an incredibly detrimental effect on so-called weight-bearing joints. These are the hips, the back, and especially the knees. Some people need chiropractic attention because of problems they caused by not taking measures to keep their weight within a healthy range. When you lose weight, you decrease the amount of regular pressure on those joints, which preserves their buoyancy and fitness for several more years so that you can keep exercising as you get older.

girljogExercise, of course, will help you regulate your weight, but there are certain types of exercise that physicians believe reduce joint swelling. Aerobics, for example, are low-impact exercises that increase your heart rate without pounding your joints. This is the benefit of cycling and swimming because you give your body a great workout and raise your heart rate plenty without having to pound your knees, hips, or lower back. If you sit in an office for much of the day, this might be especially pertinent to your lifestyle whether you’re overweight or not because prolonged stillness day-in and day-out causes stiffness in your joints, which can manifest as joint pain or lead to swelling.

The idea is most definitely to take care of your joints. Joint problems tend to be the first hindrance to fitness as people get older because they belabor the exercise process. They often do so before one even considers himself or herself old. At Green Oaks Spine & Sport we often address fitness from a chiropractic perspective, which is why we can’t help on point out how imperative it is that you take care of your joints in your fitness endeavors.

– Submitted by Mersad from gospineandsport.com.

Mother / Baby Workouts

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By Jenn Sanders

mombabyIt’s hard to squeeze in exercise between cooking meals, changing diapers, and working. It’s clear that you have little to no time to fit in a workout.

New mothers often find it difficult to lose baby weight without having to get a childcare support. Thankfully, there are mother/baby workouts that you can do with your little one. Here are a few quick and easy exercises you can do with your infant when you have a free moment.

Stretching

Find a wide area where you can sit with your legs straight out in front of you. Your baby must be lying on his back on top of your legs. Then, slowly reach toward him to stretch your hamstrings and back.

Dancing

Dancing is a great cardiovascular workout that exercises major muscle groups. It also improves balance and coordination. It doesn’t only exercise your body, it also elevates your mood, thereby reducing your stress.

You can dance while you hold your baby. Keep him as close to your body as possible. Make sure that you support his head. You can also put him in a sling with straps that fit around your waist and over your shoulders.

When dancing, alternate between slow and fast dances to increase your heart rate. Try not to bounce too much while dancing, to avoid accidentally injuring your little one.

To ensure that he’s enjoying the dance, let him wear a raw amber Baltic wonder necklace. This necklace is proven to make your baby happy while teething.

Bench Squats

Find a seat that you can squat down while you’re holding on to your child. As you sit on the bench, draw your belly tightly in.

Sit Ups

They’re also perfect to perform while lying on your back with your child sitting on your tummy. Perform a sit-up to work your abdominal muscles.

Abdominal Plank

This workout is easy. You just need to hold to do the usual abdominal plank while your baby is lying on the ground under you.

Run

You can put your child in the stroller and take him with you while you run or jog. While you run together, you can sing and chat with him. Doing so will make your workout a little sweeter. It may take a bit more planning because you need to dress him up and pack snacks and drinks. However, it’s a great way to spend time with him while exercising.

How to make it easier?

It’s not easy to workout while you’re taking care of your baby. Therefore, try to exercise before work and not after work. Keep in mind that some activities and commitments will come up at the end of the day.

Never worry about what you’ll wear when you workout with your baby. Debating what wardrobe to choose is only a waste of time.

Finding time to workout can be difficult because of your busy schedule. However, with a little planning, it’s possible. Always prioritize your health. If you get sick, who’s going to take care of your family? Never allow your health to be your second priority. It should come first. When you’re happy and healthy, everyone else is also happy and healthy.

Pumping Iron Is Good For The Heart

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By Jonathan Little, Professor at The University of British Columbia

weightsJust one session of interval weight-training can improve the risk of Type 2 diabetes complications, according to a UBC Okanagan study. This is encouraging news for those starting the New Year with good intentions.

Jonathan Little, an assistant professor in the School of Health and Exercise Sciences at UBC Okanagan’s campus, says the study demonstrates that a series of simple leg exercises, involving weights, can improve blood vessel function of people with and without diabetes.

“Individuals with Type 2 diabetes are up to four times more likely to develop cardiovascular disease than those without,” says Little, the study’s senior researcher. “After completion of just one bout of exercise, we saw an improvement in blood vessel function, an indicator of heart health and heart attack risk.

“With further study, this information could provide a new safe and cost-effective tool to help people manage their disease.”

In the study, Little and his research team compared the effect of two types of interval training—resistance (leg press, extensions and lifts) and cardiovascular (stationary bicycle) exercises—on blood vessel function. Both of these alternated periods of high and low intensity effort, in a one-to-one work/rest ratio.

Thirty-five age-matched study participants were assigned into one of three groups; people with Type 2 diabetes, non-exercisers, and regular exercisers without diabetes. Each group performed a 20-minute exercise routine, which included a warm up and seven one-minute, high-intensity efforts with a one-minute rest between each interval.

womanweights“All exercisers showed greater blood vessel function improvement after the resistance-based interval training,” says Monique Francois, a UBC graduate student and the co-author of the study. “However, this was most prominent in the Type 2 diabetes group.”

“Resistance training was introduced to this group because it’s relatively easy and can accommodate individuals who are new to exercising. This study shows that resistance-based interval training exercise is a time-efficient and effective method with immediate effects.”

According to the Canadian Diabetes Association, there are 11 million Canadians living with diabetes or prediabetes.

Diabetes is a chronic, debilitating, and sometimes fatal disease, in which the body cannot produce insulin or cannot properly use the insulin it produces. Insulin is a hormone that controls the amount of sugar in the blood.

The study, published in American Journal of Physiology: Heart and Circulatory Physiology, was funded by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

How To Workout On A Budget

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By Joel Cortez

BikingYou don’t have to spend a lot of money to get in shape. Here are some tips to help you get fit without dishing out the dough.

1. Look for alternatives. It’s important to recognize that there are plenty of exercises you can do that don’t cost a dime. Running, hiking, and walking are free – once you’ve bought a good pair of shoes. And if you can’t afford the expensive monthly gym membership, purchase a couple of good workout videos and some dumbbells. P90X, or any of the workouts will give you good results without the cost of a gym. They aren’t cheap, but if you stick with the programs, you’ll see a change in your body and your fitness levels in a matter of weeks.

2. Use free apps to track your calories, water intake, and exercise. Here are a few free (or very inexpensive) apps to consider. Each of these is easy to find via a search in iTunes.

– Lose It! By FitNow
– FitDay Mobile
– Nike Training Club
– iTreadmill Pedometer Ultra with PocketStep
– C25K
– Runkeeper
– Strava

3. Get social. Use your favorite social media tools as free support groups. Post your workouts or weight loss success on facebook and twitter – or do a google search for a weight loss forum where you can meet people with similar goals.

4. Find free workouts online. Yoga Today offers a new free yoga workout each week. And iTrain has a 6 Week Slimdown for Women program available via iTunes.

5. Use Pinterest to find the very latest tips, deals, and ideas on health, fitness, and weight loss. Pinterest is rather addicting, and you can find lots of inspiring advice, as well as coupons and deals on fitness equipment, diet programs, and healthy recipes.

6. Shop smart. Know when it’s worth it to fork out the extra money for organic foods, for example. Doing so is easy if you follow these two rules of thumb: Buy organic if the food is near the top of the food chain,high proteins are a good example(in other words, buy organic dairy, eggs, and meat.)For Peanut Butter & Whole Wheat Crackers-the multi-grain wheat crackers and whole wheat are fiber-rich and unrefined, and with your dab of peanut butter, you have a tasty and wholesome snack with adequate protein, which will keep you full for longer. Who says a weight loss diet is at the expense of taste?

As for fruits and vegetables, buy the following items in their organic form: apples, bell peppers, celery, cherries, peaches, nectarines, grapes, pears, potatoes, raspberries, spinach, and strawberries. This list is often referred to as the “dirty dozen” because researchers say you can slash your exposure to pesticides by as much as 90 percent by always buying these foods in their organic form.

7. Proteins for body building. Creatine is a nutrient that is obtained naturally in foods including meats and other proteins. Everyone has creatine in their muscle cells as it is the nutrient which enables us to use our muscles for heavy tasks. Taking creatine as a body building supplement means that your muscles can take on a greater workload so to speak. It enables you to work harder and lift heavier weights, meaning that as your muscles are worked harder, and therefore will grow faster.

Protein shakes and protein bars are another essential body building supplement. Protein is the nutrient which helps us to grow, so is obviously essential for muscle growth. Protein shakes and protein bars provide an extra boost of protein which not only helps with muscle building but also helps weight management, a good immune system, and bone support.

Purchasing protein in bulk from bodybuilding.com using a coupon will also save you money as you try to achieve your weight loss/fitness goal.

The Evolution of Hearing Aids: From The 19th Century To Now

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By Nathan Gomez

humanearAdvancements in hearing aid technology have made it possible for many people with hearing impairments to significantly improve their ability to hear. While hearing aids have been in existence since the 19th century, they’ve changed so rapidly over this time that today’s devices are almost unrecognizable to the ones available in the past. This article takes a look at the evolution of the hearing aid from the 19th century right through to 2016.

The Early Model

The first hearing aids came out in the 19th century and were essentially ear trumpets that projected sound through a funnel. Once Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone in 1876, however, hearing aid technology was vastly improved. Bell’s revolutionary invention allowed hearing aid manufacturers to further regulate the frequency, loudness and distortion of sounds that would come through the hearing aid.

The Turn of the 20th Century

1913 was the year that the Siemens Company began production on the first hearing aids to be electronically amplified. As is probably expected of machinery at that time, these hearing aids were bulky and not easy to carry around. They were similar in size to a cigar box, with a speaker that fitted into the ear.

The next major advancement in hearing aid technology came just seven years later, with the development of the vacuum tube in 1920. Invented by naval engineer Earl Hanson, the vacuum tube used a telephone transmitter to convert speech into electrical signals.

Post World War 2

In 1948, Bell Laboratories released the transistor. This was the next big turning point in the technological evolution of hearing aids and would continue to remain a defining component for decades to come.

The 1970s saw the creation of the first microprocessor, which enabled technology to start getting more compact while still maintaining the hearing aids’ ever-improving clarity. In 1975, Daniel Graupe produced a six-channel hearing aid which offered digital control of the frequency across all channels.

The Digital Age

1987 saw the launch of the first commercial digital hearing aid. Bell Laboratories created a hybrid digital/analog hearing aid that fitted around and into the ear. Other companies followed suit by designing their own hybrid hearing aids with analog amplifiers and filters that were able to be controlled digitally. In 1996, the first digital hearing aid to be commercially successful was launched by Widex.

The Present Day

Hearing aids have come a long way from the ear trumpets of the late 19th century. In 2016, they are considerably smaller and come with a wealth of added features. One of the most noted advancements of modern-day hearing aids is the invention of invisible Lyric hearing aids, which sit deep in the ear canal, making them virtually invisible to other people. For hearing aid wearers that might have been self-conscious about having their mechanism on display for all to see, this is a big move forward. We can only wonder how hearing aids will continue to evolve in the future!

Benefits Of Attending A College Preparatory School

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By Jamshed

teensThere are a number of benefits offered to students who attend a preparatory school. This is considered a bold approach to education and combines a number of academic concepts allowing students to thrive while learning advanced concepts sooner than they would in traditional education facilities. These schools blend higher education coursework with general studies in order to help give students a head start. Usually, these types of schools will allow you access to POA Tuition professionals to help you out.

Any parent or student that has considered enrolling in a preparatory school needs to be dedicated to focusing on the, often challenging, academic requirements. The good news is that each of these schools is specifically designed to help increase graduation rates and help to prepare students for a meaningful career.

A question that many people have in regard to prep schools is whether or not they really work. These schools undergo evaluations to report how the programs work and the outcome of the education a student receives. If the school is not performing as well as it should be, or there are serious questions regarding the effectiveness, then the schools may be shut down or have to undergo serious changes in their educational model in order to keep their doors open.

The fact is that prep schools are becoming increasingly important with the growing competitiveness in the job market. Students now need to seek a post-secondary education in order to ensure their financial security down the road. The programs used at these schools allow students to prepare for college coursework and see, first-hand, how rigorous it can be when studying for college level courses. This helps to ease the students into the life of a college student and increase their chances of success significantly.

Additionally, many schools offer students the ability to actually earn college credit while still in high school. This provides them a jump-start on their college degree. It will also help to minimize the amount of time the student has before seeking work in the job market. Students that complete this type of education will also have a much lower cost for college tuition since they already have two years of credits completed.

However, the most appealing benefit for many parents and students is the fact that these preparatory schools make college a real possibility for students who may have otherwise never had the opportunity or will to attend. These programs are not only beneficial for students, but also for the future of the community as a whole.

The Top 5 Body Ailments While At Your Desk – And How to Fix Them

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By Steve Barker

deskOne thing is for sure, the human body was not designed to sit behind a desk all day, staring at a screen. As a result of making our body do something it wasn’t meant for, we get sore shoulders, achy necks, strained forearms, and the list goes on. According to an article published by the Washington Post, people who watched 7 plus hours of TV in an 8 year period had a 61 percent higher risk of dying. But since so many jobs revolve around sitting at one’s desk. If we are still working toward that goal of having enough money for early retirement, what’s a desk worker to do?

Fortunately, there are products on the market and things we can do to prevent or minimize common desk-related aches and pains.

1. Your wrist and forearms hurt.

Your fingers weren’t made to hit little square bits of plastic over and over. In fact, doing so puts you at risk of repetitive strain injury or carpal tunnel syndrome. But there is a way to combat this pain.

Ergonomic keyboards were created to cause the least amount of stress and tension on your arms and wrists. Generally, ergonomic keyboards feature a gentle slope so that your arms are resting at an angle, versus flat on your desk. The keyboard also features keys that are aligned to your hands’ natural position on the keyboard. Ergonomic keyboards can range from moderately priced models to products upwards of $200.

2. The base of your neck and your shoulders are tense.

Right now, as you read this article, evaluate how you are sitting. What angle is your head at? Is it looking straight ahead to read? Or is your head tilted downward at a slight angle? When your head tilts forward, this places undue stress on the base of the neck and shoulders, causing the muscles here to contract and tighten. If these muscles are not massaged and loosened, then you become susceptible to further pain complications. The solution? Massage where it hurts or feels stiff. And no, you don’t need to book an appointment at the massage parlor. Use your fingers, or even better, buy a handheld massager that you can pull out whenever your shoulders need a rub. You should feel an almost immediate relief from pain.

3. Your lower back hurts.

According to WebMD, it happens to everyone. The lumbar region, that part of your back below your rib cage, is where you feel the pain. It can be caused by lifting something too heavy, but also from sitting too long on a chair that causes you to lean forward, or slouch. Lumbar support cushions can help to minimize your lower back pain. These come in cushions you sit on, or cushions that you put at the small of your back. Do a Google search for lumbar support and you’ll find a line up targeted to preventing lower back ailments.

4. You feel stiff and creaky.

Being in one position for too long can cause problems. Even if you have correct posture, and you are getting good support for your back, shoulders, and wrists. Maybe you get up and stretch at the top of every hour, yet you still feel creaky? One factor that could be contributing to your stiffness is the need to hydrate and stay hydrated. Your body consists of 50 to 60 percent water. This water is used up throughout the day and needs replenishing. If you begin to feel sluggish and creaky, it could be that you need to chug a glass of water.

You do not need to endure pain at your desk. With just a little research, modification, and adjustment, you could be improving the quality of your work life. Not only that, you could be preventing some other serious ailments down the line. Take control of your pain by doing something about it now.