08 November 2016

Transcription: death by sitting?

I know the title sounds a bit dramatic, but there are serious health risks associated with inactivity and in particular sitting down for long periods of time.

Of course, being in the transcription profession, sitting down for long periods of time is what us transcribers do along with many other professions.





Transcription: possible health risks


It's shocking to think that sitting to do transcription for long periods of time can cause health issues such as:

  • weight gain
  • obesity
  • high blood pressure
  • deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
  • type 2 diabetes
  • some types of cancer 
  • early death.

However, being physically active for approximately 25 minutes a day and reducing transcription / sitting time may help to reduce the risk of ill health.

It is recommended to take a break from transcription every 30 minutes


Breaking up long periods of transcription time with short bursts of physical activity for just one or two minutes can help keep your circulation and metabolism going.

Physical activity can also help to reduce the risk of:

  • Depression
  • Dementia
  • Alzheimer’s

Physical activity can:

  • Improve psychological well-being
  • Improve self-esteem
  • Improve mood and sleep quality
  • Reduce levels of anxiety and fatigue

 Doing exercise for at least 60 minutes a day can help to negate the impact of sitting for too long throughout the day


I have recently been trying to be more active so now I’ve just got to figure out how to incorporate 60 minutes of exercise into my days. The gym sounds like a good option as this could be incorporated into a daily routine.

Becoming more physically active


I used to be a gym ‘hater’, you know, one of those people who never went to a gym but said 'oh no, it’s not for me'. I was also put off by the high membership fees.

That being said, earlier this year my daughter joined a gym where you pay an affordable monthly fee and can go at any time… literally as its open 24/7. She was keen for me to go with her, so I paid for a day pass and went along.

I was very surprised to find that I really enjoyed the experience so I joined. Now I just need to build up the amount of time I spend there… that’s the hard part.


Taking regular breaks from transcription


Sometimes it is difficult to drag myself away when I'm stuck into a really good interview transcription or a focus group transcription, where it's an advantage to keep transcribing for voice identification purposes or when I've only got a few more minutes of transcription to go and it's the race to the end (fellow transcribers will know that feeling well). However, I will be making a conscious effort to take a break every 30 minutes and try to make it an active break. 

To learn more about this topic visit the NHS Choices webpage Why we should sit less

If you are interested in the transcription services I provide please visit the King Audio Transcription & Typing Services website.    



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