When Standing Isn’t an OptionThere are times in life when sitting for an extended period of time is necessary. The circulatory system maintains blood throughout your body; therefore, circulation that is compromised from long periods of sitting can lead to vein disease or other harmful conditions. From watching a movie in a theater, to traveling, to sitting behind the desk as a bank teller, there are steps you can take to maintain good blood flow and promote healthy veins for life:

• Wear compression hose when traveling, sitting, or even standing for an extended period. Compression hose can also prevent varicose veins when used during pregnancy.
• While sitting, rock your feet back and forth from heel to toe activating your calf muscle.
• Flex and stretch your feet by writing the alphabet with your toes or a simple dorsiflex, bring your toes higher than your heel and towards your calf.
• Knee lifts are a simple exercise you can discreetly perform while tightening your quads with your knee bent, lift your leg about a foot off the floor. Be sure to even out your legs and perform the same number of repetitions on each side.

Performing leg exercises while sitting can improve your circulation and reduce your risk of developing blood clots but they do not replace exercise. If you are forced to sit during the day be sure and take frequent breaks to walk and stretch your legs. Set a timer to remind you to take a break to walk around or complete one of the exercises above. Keep in mind, these tips and regular exercise must be used frequently to be most effective.

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