In this most patriotic of summers there are plenty of reasons to wave the Union Jack about: the Diamond Jubilee, the Euro 2012, the Torch Relay and London 2012 to name a few - and now we can add bingo-wing-busting benefits to the list.
To mark the great British summer of 2012, the first-ever scientific research into the fitness benefits of Union Jack-waving has been commissioned by leading online retailer Littlewoods.com and the results make very good reading.
After extensive testing on six adults in strict lab conditions it can be revealed that one hour of flag-waving activity will burn off 137 calories – the equivalent to a single serving of Coronation chicken1, and unlike some workouts, this can be achieved whilst sprawled on a sofa watching events on TV, standing at a street party or sitting in a stadium.
Alongside the flag-waving experiment, Littlewoods.com also conducted separate research2 which reveals how 28.7 million Brits are planning to buy and wave a Union Jack flag to celebrate all the major events this summer.
Based on just one hours flag waving a day for the Torch Relay, Diamond Jubilee, Euro 2012, Andy Murray matches at Wimbledon and the duration of London 2012, patriotic Brits can expect to burn off a whopping 3,699 calories this summer. That’s equivalent to over 106 billion calories burned across the nation!
In tribute to the great British summer, Littlewoods.com is launching perfect calorie-busting flags along with other GB inspired paraphernalia, so patriots across the UK can not only fly the flag for their favourite events but also boost their biceps.
According to Geoff Middleton from the University of Lincoln, School of Sport and Exercise Science, who conducted the testing, “If you are going to attend a Jubilee street party or a Torch Relay get yourself a flag. Waving enthusiastically can increase calorific expenditure by 66% compared to standing still and not waving a flag at all. Flag waving predominantly uses the muscles of the upper arms, shoulders and upper torso - so either get two flags or change your waving arms frequently otherwise you may notice the difference in your arms at The End of the summer!”
Gary Kibble, Brand Director at Littlewoods.com also commented, “On the back of these new findings and the calorie-burning benefits of waving flags, we may now have to switch the Jubilee department in which we stock these products to our Sports and exercise range.”