San Diego, California (NAPSI) - Sitting too long in a conventional chair at the office or on the couch at home is bad news for the body but you can do something about it. According to chiropractor Dr. Todd Comer, who specializes in musculoskeletal and repetitive stress injuries, it can weaken the muscles of the spine, decrease metabolic activity, which is linked to heart disease, and can even decrease a person’s life span.

“Many of us suffer from what’s called the sitting disease, which is caused by the sedentary lifestyle we lead today,” said Dr. Comer. “Even if you are physically active, you are still at high risk from the negative health effects of uninterrupted sitting.”

Dr. Comer offers these tips to help people stay fit and healthy while sitting at work and home:

• Try not to sit for more than 45 minutes at any given time without getting up and standing for at least 15 minutes. This has been shown to increase productivity and help offset the sitting disease.

• At home, stay active by marching in place. Next, get on your hands and knees to perform cow and cat stretches to elongate shortened and sedentary muscles.

• A great stretch for your upper body is to cross your right knee over your left knee and pull it up toward you. Then, twist your back and turn your head to the right. Hold for five seconds. Now perform on the opposite side.

• Another seated stretch is to sit on the edge of the chair, tuck your feet in, open your arms and hands to the side, squeeze your shoulder blades together and then pull your neck in, giving yourself a triple chin. Hold for five seconds.

• Consider investing in your health with an ergonomic chair such as the Back App chair. The chair’s innovation is the adjustable red ball under the saddle seat, which provides smooth balanced movements that promote a natural healthy posture. When the chair is in motion, you’ll get a gentle workout that will help prevent aches and pains in your neck, back and hips. It will also strengthen your back and encourage proper posture. To find out more about the Back App, visit www.backapp.com.

Dr. Comer cautions that it’s important for people to understand their fitness level and, in order to prevent injuries, not to overdo it when performing any exercises.