A Simple 22-Minute Walk Can Counteract the Dangers of Prolonged Sitting

In recent research, it has been discovered that just 22 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) can counteract the adverse health effects linked to sitting for extended periods. This finding is particularly relevant in today’s world, where many jobs and leisure activities involve prolonged sitting.

Key Takeaways:

  • A mere 22 minutes of MVPA can negate the health risks of sitting all day.
  • Sedentary behavior is linked to higher mortality, especially for those who engage in less than 22 minutes of MVPA daily.
  • Every additional minute of MVPA reduces the risk of death.
  • Achieving 22 minutes of MVPA daily eliminates the increased death risk from prolonged sitting.
  • Engaging in more than 22 minutes of MVPA daily further reduces overall mortality risk.

The Details Behind the Study

The study, led by Edvard Sagelv of the Arctic University of Norway, revealed that only individuals who sat for more than 12 hours daily faced a heightened risk of mortality. This risk encompasses all forms of sitting, whether at work or during leisure activities like watching TV.

Interestingly, even if one engages in less than the recommended 22 minutes of MVPA, such as 10 minutes, there’s still a reduced risk of death. However, reaching the 22-minute mark completely eradicates the increased mortality risk associated with sedentary behavior. In essence, the more physical activity, the better the health outcomes.

Comparisons with Existing Recommendations

It’s worth noting that the UK government’s current MVPA recommendation stands at approximately 21 minutes and 24 seconds daily. This figure is strikingly close to the study’s findings, suggesting that even a slight increase in daily physical activity can have significant health benefits.

The Importance of Staying Active

In a world dominated by screens and sedentary jobs, it’s easy to overlook the importance of regular physical activity. However, this study underscores the significance of even short bursts of vigorous activity. Whether it’s a brisk walk, a quick jog, or any other form of exercise, incorporating MVPA into one’s daily routine can be a life-saver.


While the modern lifestyle often promotes extended periods of sitting, it’s crucial to find ways to stay active. A simple 22-minute walk or any form of MVPA can make a world of difference in one’s health and longevity. As the research suggests, every minute counts, and it’s never too late to start.