Sedentary behavior is defined as “Engaging in behaviors during the waking day that are done while sitting or reclining and result in little energy expenditure.” (Koster et al Diabetes Care, 2011;34(2):497–503) Research shows that there are health risks are associated with spending more than 6–7 sedentary hours per day, independent of exercise time. (Patel et al, Am J Epidemiol, 2010;172(4):419–29) The aim was to identify which patients could benefit from reducing their sedentary time. 101 patients at Cleadon Park Medical Centre, South Shields were questioned. Sedentary hours were self-reported, physical activity was measured using The General Practice Physical Activity Questionnaire (GPPAQ). Four categories emerged: Less than active and excessively sedentary n= 45 (45%); Less than active and not excessively sedentary n= 37 (37%); Active and excessively sedentary n=9 (9%); Active and not excessively sedentary n=10 (10%). This shows patients are not exercising enough, sitting too much or, as with 45%, both. Reducing sedentary time as well as increasing physical activity should be encouraged. Many patients, including those who are already adequately active, would benefit.
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