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Researchers have found that sitting for long periods contributes to tens of thousands of deaths every year. But in the short term, it can be a real pain in the neck.

We’ve been told that sitting is the new smoking. And a recent study has revealed this is remarkably close to the truth. Researchers from Queen’s University Belfast and Ulster University in the UK published a study in March revealing that a sedentary lifestyle contributed to 70,000 deaths in the UK in 2016. This was more than the number caused by lung cancer in the same year.

“Many individuals in the UK spend their leisure time in sedentary behaviour, and the workplace represents a significant proportion of unavoidable daily sitting time for many people,” the authors wrote.

Of course, the sedentary lifestyle was just one factor identified as contributing to the deaths – many cases had other factors involved. But Guillaume Tual, a movement therapist and founder of Peak Movement in Sydney, says sitting for too long has more immediate impacts on your physical health. 

It can be a literal pain in the neck.

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