You might not sit on the floor very often, but, according to new research, you might want to start! Studies have shown that doing so might boost your life expectancy.
Dan Buettner, founder of Blue Zones, an organization that investigates the world’s longest-living people, shared an anecdotal story about the health benefits of sitting on the floor with Well + Good.
Buettner met the world’s longest-living woman in Okinawa, Japan, and saw her continually get up and down from the floor, which he linked to her longevity. Sitting on the floor is much more common in the East, but it might be worth trying in the West, too, and not just because of Buettner’s anecdote.
A 2012 study found that those who were unable or struggled to rise from a seated position on the floor had a higher mortality rate than those who could. According to the study’s lead scientists, the link between longevity and movement comes down to aerobic exercise. Continuing to move the body, stretch the muscles, and maintain coordination all have a positive impact on life expectancy.
Lauren Roxburgh, a body alignment specialist, said while you don’t have to sit on the floor all day, doing so periodically is “a great way to boost circulation, blood flow, and energy, increase flexibility and range of motion, and create space and build some deeper awareness of your body while helping you feel grounded.”
If you want to work on improving your flexibility so you can sit on the floor, yoga is a fantastic place to start.
[Via Well + Good]