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Kiwis sit a lot, according to Fitbit data
Wed, 4th May 2016
FYI, this story is more than a year old

Kiwis are high on the list when it comes to sitting time, with new research from Fitbit showing we're only behind the U.S. and China with how much we like to sit.

Based on anonymous data from over one million global Fitbit users, on average, people are sedentary for up to 90 minutes at a time. In New Zealand the total sitting time before 6:00pm is 5 hours and 35 minutes.

Fitbit says research shows that even with appropriate levels of physical activity, sitting for prolonged periods of time is associated with a significantly higher risk of heart disease, and each hour of sitting increases chances of heart disease by 14%.

According to Fitbit's data, the three most sedentary times for New Zealanders were found to be:

  • The Pre-Lunch Slump: 11:00AM-11:45AM
  • The Afternoon Lag: 2:00PM - 3:00PM
  • The Post-Dinner Plunge: 7:45PM - 8:45PM

Fitbit found that total sedentary time increases rapidly between ages 20 and 24, by about an hour during those years. Furthermore, total sedentary time continues to increase with age, by about 30 minutes from ages 24 to 30, and another 30 minutes from ages 30 to 55.

The research found total sedentary time decreases after 55, most notably between ages 58-66, right when people start to reach the retirement age.

Fitbit is encouraging Kiwis to decrease their sedentary time, and is offering a few tips:

  • Challenge Your Coworkers: Start Workweek Hustle challenges in the Fitbit app with your coworkers, motivating everyone to get up during the day and increase their step count.
  • Email less, talk more: There are times when emails are necessary, but oftentimes a quick chat with someone will work just as well – if not better! So next time you're tempted to shoot Jane in accounting a quick email, get up and go ask her in person instead. Your step count will thank you.
  • Enjoy the Sunshine: If you have willing participants, take things outside by going for a short walk for your meeting – studies show that walking improves creativity!
  • Stand up every hour: Make sure you get up at some point during every hour, even if just to stretch or walk around for a few minutes. Walking to meetings or grabbing another cup of coffee totally counts.
  • Take the Stairs: Work in a big corporate office building? Take the stairs instead of the elevator.

Fitbit's latest tracker, the Fitbit Alta, is equipped with Reminders to Move, which reminds users with a buzz on the wrist at the top of every hour when they haven't hit their hourly step goal of 250 steps.

All wrist-based Fitbit device users are now able to see and track their Hourly Activity in the Fitbit app.

Total Time Sitting Before 6PM 1. US  -  5hr 47min (5.783) 2. China   -  5hr 45min (5.75) 3. New Zealand  -  5hr 35min (5.583) 4. UK  -  5hr 29min (5.483) 5. Canada  -  5hr 25min (5.416) 6. India  -  5hr 23min (5.383) 7. France   -  5hr 15min (5.25) 8. Italy  -  5hr 12min (5.20) 9. Australia   -  5hr 10min (5.166) 10. Spain  -  5hr 2min (5.03)