NEAT: The Everyday Movement Philosophy

A little movement, everyday.

It’s great if you go to the gym, do a yoga class or play sport once, twice or even a few times a week.

But, if you’re sitting on your butt for the rest of the time you, your health, fitness and posture will suffer and you could be at a greater risk of injury when you are active.

But don't worry, you'll be amazed how much of a difference a little, often can make to your well being.

walking and everyday movement is so beneficial for your health

Focusing on Everyday Movement:

Simply moving more and sitting less will boost your health and fitness plus improve your posture making you less susceptible to injury.

One of the reasons everyday movement is so powerful is because of the improved calorie burning called N.E.A.T, or non-exercise activity thermogenesis.

It takes energy (calories) to move even the smallest muscle. If you’re still, say lounging on the sofa you burn about 1.5 calories per minute; this is to fuel your body’s most basic functions.

Go from lying down to sitting in a chair and answering e-mail, and you’ll burn 25% more calories. Now start fidgeting in your chair and you’ll burn more.

And all those little movements can add up: In fact the amount of everyday movement you get — beyond the scheduled exercise sessions you might be doing — might matter even more for your overall health than trips to the gym, according to research published in the Archives of Internal Medicine

Here are some NEAT ways (see what we did there?) to get more Everyday Movement into your life:

Set Movement Alarms

Setting regular movement alarms can be a great way to get frequent movement into your day, especially If you have a desk job or collapse on the couch as soon as you get home — it could help you live longer!

Sitting for extended periods of time has been linked with heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and obesity.

Take Action

Set your phone alarm or vibrate function to go off approximately every hour if possible; then move. Try installing Google Fit, if you're an Android user.

Google Fit

How you move depends on your situation, here are a few ideas:

Try out a few body weight exercises: Press-ups, squats and tables work great together.

body weight exercise


Use a Pedometer

A pedometer is a great little inexpensive tool to gauge how much moving you’re currently doing and then hopefully motivate you to do more!

A pedometer will track how many steps you take during the day, some more advanced products will also track distance traveled, calories and sleep quality

FREE - Phone App Pedometer

Low Cost - Belt clip pedometer.

Medium Cost - Wrist pedometer with extra functions.

Premium OptionWatch Style pedometer with loads of functions!

How to get to 10,000 steps a day

Record your step count each day for one week. Add 10% to your step count every week until you’re doing 10,000 steps a day. This is a great achievement and if you keep this up you’ll be a top stepper.

Here are a few ideas to get you you to your 10,000 step goals:

Every step counts!

If you’re a consistent 10,000 stepper but you’re hungry for more, you can challenge yourself to bigger numbers. Challenge yourself to daily, weekly, monthly or yearly targets and feel proud of your achievements.

Pace and Fidget!

You probably try to avoid both of these moves to keep from looking irritable or nervous, but they’re easy exercises for increased NEAT and they don’t need to look that way.

Pacing rather than standing still and fidgeting/ changing position rather than sitting still will burn more calories and are prime examples of NEAT in action.

Try these pace and fidget ideas:

When seated, try changing your leg position often.

If you’re in a chair you could rest one foot on the chair (in a half crossed leg position) and one on the floor, this is also a good gentle stretch. If you’re seated on a sofa or the floor there are many different positions you could rotate through. If you’re on the phone gently walk up and down the area you have.

Stand up when ever you press send on an email. If you’re waiting for a train or bus walk up and down the platform or waiting area.