It's (exercise) snack time!

It’s (exercise) snack time!

Medically reviewed by Brandon Bishop DPT, ATC

You’re sitting? It might be time for a snack—an exercise snack, that is.

New research shows that bursts of exercise throughout the day — one- or two-minute “snacks” — can improve health and protect muscles from the harmful consequences of sitting too long.

Research has also found that exercise snacks can be just as beneficial as traditional workouts. Why? The key is to move your body more often. In one studyparticipants who sat continuously for more than 10 hours but exercised 30 minutes straight a day had higher levels of blood sugar, cholesterol and body fat, but men and women who moved more often during the day were more healthy.

And the best part? You can have exercise snacks anytime, anywhere. “You don’t need to find 45- to 60-minute blocks throughout the day to take care of yourself,” said Brandon Bishop DPT, ATC, a physical therapist at Reischl Physical Therapy in California. “Participating in two-minute exercises throughout the day is a great way to improve your overall health, both physically and mentally.”

Here’s how it works: Try one of the exercises in the snack menu below for two minutes every hour (or every 30 minutes if possible) and get ready to look and feel like a healthy snack.

mini lungs

  • Start in a standing position.
  • Step forward with one foot and lower yourself into a mini lunge position. Stand up and repeat on the other leg.
  • Tip: Do not let the front knee roll forward past the toes.

Balance on one leg with alternating movements on the floor

Balance on one leg with alternating movements on the floor

  • Start in a standing position.
  • Bend forward at the hips, lifting one leg straight behind you and reaching one hand towards the ground at the same time. Return to the starting position and repeat with the other arm.
  • Tip: Maintain balance and keep your back straight as you lean forward.

Squat with chair touch

Squat with chair touch

  • Start standing in front of a chair.
  • Lower yourself into a squat, bending your hips and knees, until you’re lightly touching the chair. Return to starting position and repeat.
  • Tip: Make sure you maintain balance throughout the exercise and don’t let your knees bend forward beyond your toes.

Squat jumps

Squat jumps

  • Start in a standing position with your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart.
  • Lower yourself into a squat position with your arms straight, then jump up, swinging your arms back as you do so. Land into a squat and repeat the movement.
  • Tip: Make sure your knees don’t collapse inward or roll forward past your toes as you land, and try not to arch your back excessively.

Wall squats

1684878313 241 Its exercise snack time | history-ophthalmology.com

  • Start in a standing position facing a wall with your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart.
  • Lean into the squat against the wall with your knees bent at 90 degrees and hold this position.
  • Tip: Make sure your knees are not bent forward beyond your toes and keep your back flat against the wall throughout the exercise.

Wall Squat with leg raises

  • Start in a standing position facing a wall. Place your palms against the wall and lean back into a squat position.
  • Slowly lift one leg up to 90 degrees, then lower it again and repeat with the other leg.
  • Tip: Make sure your knees are not bent forward beyond your toes and keep your back flat against the wall throughout the exercise.

Dodge

Dodge

  • Start standing. She bends her hips and knees into a mini squat position.
  • Take a slow step to the side, then return to the starting position in the opposite direction.
  • Tip: Keep your feet pointing forward, abs tight, and don’t let your knees collapse inward throughout the exercise.

Standing hip extension

Standing hip extension

  • Start in a standing position holding onto a stable object for support.
  • Lift one leg back, then slowly return to starting position and repeat.
  • Tip: Keep your back straight and keep your balance throughout the exercise.

Standard plank

Standard plank

  • Start by lying on your front, resting on your elbows.
  • Engage your abdominal muscles and lift your hips and legs into a plank position, keeping your elbows directly under your shoulders. Stay in this position.
  • Tip: Keep your back straight and gently tuck your chin throughout the exercise.

Supine position 90/90 Alternating heel taps with posterior pelvic tilt

Supine position 90/90 Alternating heel taps with posterior pelvic tilt

  • Start by lying on your back with your legs bent and your feet flat on the ground. Squeeze your abs to tilt your pelvis back, then move both legs to a 90-degree angle.
  • Slowly lower one leg until the heel touches the floor, keeping the knee bent, then return it to the starting position and repeat with the other leg.
  • Tip: Keep your abs tight and your pelvis tilted back throughout the exercise.
From articles on your site
  • 2-Minute Workouts: Exercises You Can Make Time For Too ›
  • 5 quick exercises to do during commercial breaks ›
  • 15 Minute Cardio Workout You Can Do Anywhere ›
  • Tips for busy moms: 10 quick exercises you can do anywhere with your kids ›
  • Top 10 Ways to Burn 200 Calories in Under an Hour ›
Related articles Around the web