the claim: replacing your desk chair with an exercise ball can improve your posture.
20,2010 fact fitness ball is becoming a popular alternative to regular old office chairs, one waysome say —
Burn more calories and improve posture.
The increase in heat burning is real, but small.
According to a 2008 study, sitting on a fitness ball doing paperwork on a table burns about 4 calories per hour than sitting in a chair doing the same activity, or get 30 more calories on a typical workday.
This number does not take into account the additional burns that can be caused by daily activities such as bouncing or lifting legs, and many users say the balls will inspire them to do so.
But as far as posture is concerned, there is no convincing evidence yet.
Though supporters say the ball forces users to sit straight to stabilize themselves, a 2009 British study found, sitting on a treatment ball for a long time can lead to as much lack of sleep and \"bad sitting posture\" as the office chair \".
Another study by Dutch researchers last year compared workers who type for up to an hour on a fitness ball and sitting on an office chair with armrests.
These balls produce more muscle activity and 33% \"trunk movement \".
But they also have more spinal contractions.
The researchers wrote that the ad \"concluded that the advantage of the body load sitting on a fitness ball may not exceed the disadvantage . \".
Similar results were found in other studies.
The bottom line of sitting on a fitness ball consumes more energy than sitting in an office chair, but lacks evidence of improved posture.
New York Times.
The coma version of this article was printed on page 5 of the New York edition on September 21, 2010 with the title: Claim: replacing your office chair with a fitness ball can improve your posture.
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