Now, more than ever, many of us find ourselves working at our desk for longer periods of time. We may be working from home more and finding it difficult to separate work life from home life. As a result, we work late into the evenings and end up living a more sedentary lifestyle. Unfortunately, sitting down for prolonged periods of time is hinders optimal health and can lead to the onset of high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, and diesease. Fortunately, all it takes is some forward-thinking and action to prevent negative health issues. Exercising at your desk works to reduce chronic pain and improve mobility in addition to improving mood, productivity, and improved fitness. These tips can help you get started.
Why You Need to Stretch at Your Desk
Exercise is an integral part of working
A happy and productive worker means that they are well-rounded in all aspects of life. They are content in their personal lives as well as career, which is why employers are looking to incorporate workout programs into their wellbeing package. Take short breaks frequently also help you to return to your desk refreshed and ready to work.
It relieves stress
Stress is one of the largest causes of unplanned absences in the workplace. Along with many other benefits, regular exercise can significantly reduce stress levels. When there are looming deadlines and work is piling up, exercising is a great way to relieve pent up tension.
It fights a modern epidemic
Sitting for long periods of time is detrimental to our health, and more than six hours of sitting down can greatly increase the risk of chronic illness. To help prevent health issues, simple desk exercises are a great and viable solution to keep health in check.
Top Desk Exercises to Try
1. Triceps stretch
Raise one arm and bend it so that your hand reaches to touch the opposite shoulder blade. It is fine if you can’t actually reach it. Place your other hand on top of your bent elbow and gently pull the elbow toward the head to extend the stretch. Hold for two or three deep breaths. Repeat on the other side.
2. Neck rolls
Sitting comfortably, relax, and lean your head forward. Slowly roll your head in a circle one side for ten seconds. Be conscious to relax the muscles and move slowly. The neck is a delicate part of your body, so avoid fast movements and tensing up. Repeat on the other side. Do this three times in each direction.
3. Shoulder stretch
At your desk, clasp your hands together above your head with your palms facing up toward the ceiling. Push your arms up, stretching towards the sky. Hold for two to three breaths. Focus on extending your arms and straightening your spine.
4. Torso twist
Give your back and spine a stretch by stretching out your torso. While sitting down at your desk, place your right hand over your left knee and look over your left shoulder. Hold this pose for around 30 seconds, breathing and remembering to lengthen through the spine. Breathe out and return to the center. Repeat the action on the opposite side. It’s a great exercise to release any tension from your lower back and sides.
5. Hamstring flexes
Sit in your chair with both feet on the ground. Extend one leg outward. Breathe into your torso and move slowly toward your toes to touch them. If you cannot touch them, this is natural. Keep working on this stretch and you will soon find you are able to. Hold this pose for two to three breaths, then return to center. Repeat on the other leg.
These exercises are easily done while sitting at your desk. There are many more mobility exercises you can do in your office with minimal space and no equipment.
Are you looking to improve your mobility during this time? To get started on obtaining your health and fitness goals, and receive our suite of dynamic office mobility exercises, contact Genesis Performance. We will help you fit in exercise and wellness practices into your current schedule and inspire you to reach optimal health. We help clients across the nation virtually.