Sitting at a desk all day can wreak havoc on your posture. Many aches and pains can be attributed to slouching over a computer day in and day out.
Here are some simple stretches you can do from your desk that will make life a bit more comfortable for you and keep you moving. Try to avoid long periods of inactivity by doing this regularly!
#1 Shoulder shrug
Breathe in and shrug your shoulders as high as your ears.
✓ Hold this position and then lower them. Repeat this movement five times.
✓ Move your head from side to side as though you are saying no, and then lift your head up and down.
#2 Stand up regularly
Now this might seem like an obvious one – however, simply standing up then sitting back down without using your hands can make a huge difference to your body.
This movement uses so many muscle groups and will also stretch your legs helping you to feel more comfortable when you sit back down again.
This is a really handy exercise to do while you are on the phone as nobody will know any different and you won’t be trying to use the computer while you do it!
#3 Hand circles
This is another great exercise if you are constantly typing all day.
✓ Create a closed fist with both of your hands. Trace circles in the air clockwise for twenty repetitions then reverse the movement and perform the movement counter clockwise.
✓ Repeat this movement with the opposite hand. When you are finished shake out both hands to loosen them out again.
#4 Crossed-arms stretch
Stretch one arm out straight in front of you. Using the opposite hand, hold the elbow of the arm in front of you and pull it across your torso.
✓ This will stretch both your shoulder and back muscles which can get very tight and ache from leaning over a computer at your desk.
✓ Hold the stretch then release and repeat with the opposite arm.
#5 Torso twist
Now this is one of my favourite moves for really loosening up the muscles. Pop to the bathroom and do it if you want to really stretch!
✓ Breathe in then as you breathe out again, look to the left and hold the back of your seat with your left hand.
✓ Use your right hand to hold the side of the seat. Keeping your eyes level, twist your torso as far as possible around towards the back of the room.
✓ Hold this position and see just how far around the room you can look.
✓ Carefully return to the starting position and repeat on the opposite side.
#6 Leg extensions
This is a great exercise to stretch your legs without getting out of your seat!
✓ Hold your chair to help you keep your balance and then stretch out both your legs in front of you so that they are parallel to the ground.
✓ Flex and point your feet ten times then relax. Repeat this exercise ten times.
#7…Acquire an exercise ball!
This is huge in American offices, and for good reason. Consider losing the desk chair and getting an exercise ball in its place! Seriously!
✓ The instability will force you to keep good posture and it will activate loads of muscles in your body to keep you balanced.
There is also something fun about being able to bounce around while you do your work!
Take Home Message
It really is less than ideal to spend the bulk of our time sitting at a desk in-active. Unfortunately this is the reality for many people and can cause a great deal of aches and pains as a result.
These simple stretches may help to loosen the body out and reduce discomfort caused by being in the one position for so long.
Furthermore, try a few of the below stretching exercises outside at lunch:
Hip openers, side stretches, quad stretches