Expert claims natural movement is better than structured exercise for overall health

MALIBU, Calif. (KABC) -- Exercise physiologist Katy Bowman says getting regular exercise is great, but it's not so fruitful if you are sedentary the rest of your day.

In her new book, "Move your DNA," she offers insightful ways to move more and exercise less.

"What we've been doing for movement is really boiling down to the single hour of exercise, three to five times a week. But there really is a need to get more movement throughout the day. It doesn't have to be big, sweaty, change your clothes, need a shower, special equipment type of exercise," said Bowman.

She offered some tips like holding walking meetings or strolling conference calls, which are becoming less unusual. Even the standing desk is more common place, as many realize the negativity associated with prolonged periods of being sedentary.

We've all heard sitting is the new smoking in terms of health risks, but Bowman says standing all day isn't the solution.

She actually recommends taking sit breaks. But she wants you to sit all the way down to the floor.

"Stand up and sit down. Maybe sit in your chair but sit in a different position -- cross your legs in your chair; cross one leg, cross the other leg," suggested Bowman. "If you don't have a standing work station, you can flip a box over and put your computer up on a box."

Bowman says sit on the floor and feel the difference in the work your body is doing.

"It's these little ideas that you can break free from this idea that you have to be still in order to accomplish your work tasks," she said.

We've narrowed the scope of our movement at home too.

With her children, Bowman took a pass on pushing her kids around in a stroller.

"We opted for no strollers, so we've carried our kids the bulk of the time, which allows them to use a lot more muscle early on," said Bowman. "They started walking sooner than what is average. And now they can walk with us two to three miles at a time."

It doesn't take much of a movement makeover to redirect your DNA.

"Take low intensity walks for two minutes is enough to change the cells," said Bowman.

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