Recharge and Revitalize: Practices for Taking Work Breaks
Work Wellness

Recharge and Revitalize: Practices for Taking Work Breaks

|Sep 3, 2023
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The pressures of today's fast-paced environment can make even the most dedicated workers exhausted and unmotivated. It's crucial to take breaks frequently despite the hectic atmosphere.

As a result, we have discussed the drawbacks of a sedentary lifestyle and the benefits of taking a break at work in achieving and maintaining a healthy work-life balance.

Consequences of Sedentary Lifestyle at Work

Circulatory System Problems

Your heart, like any other muscle in your body, benefits from regular exercise. When you need to move quickly, your heart may be unable to keep up with sudden movement. As a result, taking even a short flight of stairs when the lift is broken can leave you gasping for air due to your lungs' decreased capacity to absorb oxygen. At last, your blood pressure increases, leading to vasoconstriction, which can increase the risk of future strokes and other complications.

Circulatory System Problems - Taking a break at work

Legs and Gluteals

The huge leg and gluteal muscles might shrink and weaken from prolonged sitting. These big muscles help you walk and keep you steady. You can increase the risk of falling and straining your muscles during exercise if you don't take a stretch break at work. The benefits of standing desks can help you move your muscles throughout the day and keep them healthy.

Weight Gain

Muscle movement aids in the breakdown of dietary carbohydrates and fats. Long periods of sitting reduce digestion efficiency, leading to the storage of extra fat and sugar.

Health issues, such as metabolic syndrome, might arise if you spend most of your time sedentary. New studies show that you must take a break at work for 60–75 minutes daily to counteract the negative effects of sitting for long periods.

Weight Gain

Spinal issues

It's common sense that holding the same position for hours might cause back pain.

The hips and back (spinal health) can take a serious hit from too much sitting. Your flexor muscles may shorten, and your posture may suffer; altering your posture in this way can have a negative effect on your spinal health.

Anxiety and Depression

The mental repercussions of sitting are often taken less seriously than the physical ones. People who sit for long periods are more likely to develop depression and anxiety. The possible explanation is that the mental health advantages of fitness are diminished when one spends most of their waking hours sedentary. Therefore, regular mental health breaks at work are necessary to help reduce this danger.

How to Take a Break at Work

Rest Breaks

Throughout a typical workday, employees are entitled to periodic periods of rest; food and personal leisure might count as rest breaks.

Taking a break at work benefits employees to rejuvenate themselves from the mental and physical labor they've been putting in.

Rest Breaks

Active Breaks

Taking a break at work benefits muscle tone, posture, focus, tension, and self-esteem. This is why it's crucial to take several stretch breaks at work. A break doesn't have to be a full-on workout; even using light desk exercise equipment can get your blood pumping.

Micro-Breaks

Breaks of any length can be beneficial. An extremely productive break is a micro-break lasting for less than 10 minutes. Just stepping away from your work and doing desk exercises greatly benefits your body.

One study found that office workers taking a break at work for even 5 to 10 minutes performed better than those who took longer breaks once every three hours.

Micro-Breaks - Taking a break at work

Exercise Break

A meta-analysis found that persons who sit for lengthy periods have the same risk as smokers, highlighting the need for regular activity breaks. Stretching and standing exercises are simple activities that'll help you stay physical throughout the day. Many of these may be done without leaving your desk, while others are better suited to a group setting.

Eye Breaks

Remove your eyes from the screen after every 40-45 minutes, using a computer for extended amounts of time might cause fatigue. Breaking up your time in front of the screen is recommended to reduce eye strain and neck and head pain. The 20-20 guideline recommends getting up and looking at least 20 feet away from the screen every 20 minutes.

Eye Breaks - Taking a break at work

 

 

Ergonomic Break Software

Ergonomic break programs are designed to alert users when it is time to take a break at work. The software serves as a reminder to take a break and might range from a basic timer that sounds at regular intervals to an intricate algorithm that adjusts the pauses as needed.

Mental Health Breaks

It's difficult to stay on track when other chores keep popping up and threatening your progress toward deadlines. That's why taking a mental health break at work is critical by pressing the RESET button. Depending on your level of frustration, your mental break can be brief and relaxing or lengthy and taxing.

Short mental breaks can be anything from doodling for five minutes at your desk to playing a few hands of Candy Crush or Solitaire.

The Advantages of Ergonomics

Ergonomic furniture is useful because it can lessen the number of accidents that employees sustain while at work. Workplace ailments like back discomfort, and strained necks can be reduced with the help of ergonomic furniture by providing support and promoting healthy posture. The Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) states that ergonomics interventions, such as desk exercise equipment, can help reduce the number and severity of work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) by reducing muscle fatigue and increasing productivity.

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What to Consider While Shopping For Ergonomic Office Furniture

Think about adaptability: Find furniture that can be rearranged to accommodate a variety of workers and their needs. Standing desks that can be raised or lowered are one solution to the problem of workers with different heights.

Look for back support: Find an ergonomic chair with armrests and proper posture, like with a workstation and proper lumbar support.

Test it: It's a good idea to get your staff to try out a few different kinds of ergonomic furniture before you make any big purchases. This will make it easier for them to choose furniture that works for them in terms of comfort and support.

Make sure to look for accessories such as a balance board for a standing desk and a neck pillow for enhanced comfort.

Ending Note

Prioritizing our health is not a luxury but a requirement for long-term achievement. Therefore, investing in our productivity and well-being by taking breaks at work is a no-brainer and important for all!

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