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What is 'Incidental Exercise'?

Incidental exercise is any activity built up in small amounts over the course of day (Queensland health, 2018). Its often less structured and planned than a single bout of exercise, and can occur in many ways.  

For example:
-         Parking the car further away
-         Taking the stairs of the escalator/elevator
-         Walking to your colleague instead of sending an email
-         Walking to shops or to catch public transport
-         Cleaning/pottering around the house.

Why should I participate in ‘Incidental Exercise’?

Incidental exercise has been shown to keep you burning energy, remain fit, improve concentration and offer a chance to get outside in nature (which in itself has many amazing benefits for our well-being).  Research has shown that one structured exercise session a day can’t out do the hours of sitting a day. Sitting or standing is known as sedentary behaviour. A sedentary lifestyle is the second greatest contributor, behind tobacco smoking, to the cancer burden in Australia and associated with increased risk of type 2 diabetes. 

The Australian Physical Activity guidelines state that we must reduce time spent sitting and break up prolonged periods of sitting every 30 minutes.

Does this mean I don’t have to do structured and planned exercise?

No. Incidental exercise doesn’t supplement a scheduled exercise. Incidental exercise is simple lifestyle changes that can be made in addition to scheduled exercise. Together,a scheduled exercise routine and incidental activity create an active lifestyle.  

Whats next?

Incidental exercise is the summation of our small movement bouts throughout our day. Aim to consciously increase your incidental exercise and if you like a specific goal aim for 10,000 steps a day and stand up every 30 minutes.  

An active lifestyle isn’t just whilst we’re in the gym. Take it outside and in to all areas of your life.

If you require furthersupport with structured or incidental exercise, chat to our team today on 1300869 169 or email  

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