Studies have shown that people who sit for long intervals on a daily basis are at higher risk for obesity, diabetes, heart disease, depression and a whole list of other ailments. Luckily, we have gathered this list of stretches and exercises that you can easily perform at your desk job or in your office. They will help you keep your muscles relaxed and limber when you are at work so you can ward off the negative health consequences that are associated with excessive sitting.
Upper body stretches you can do sitting at your desk:
Overhead Triceps Stretch
Lift your arm and bend your elbow so that your hand touches your back. Place your other hand on the bent elbow and gently apply pressure. Hold for 20 seconds, relax and repeat stretch with other arm.
Sit up in your chair. Looking straight ahead, place your hands on the back of your head with your elbows extended outward. Gently press your elbows back and hold the position for 10 seconds.
Sit up in your chair. Lift your shoulders up to your ears. Hold the position for a few seconds and then roll your shoulders back. Repeat the process about 10 times.
Back/Lower Body Stretches you can do at your desk:
Put your hand under your elbow and stretch your arm across your chest. Hold the stretch for 20 seconds and repeat with your other arm. Don’t rotate your hips or shoulders, during the exercise.
Sit up and firmly grab your chair. Lift your legs up and out so that they are parallel with the floor. Hold that position and flex your feet forward five times to stretch out your foot and leg muscles.
Lower Back/ Thigh Stretch
Keep your back straight, grab the back of your thigh with both of your hands and carefully pull your knee toward your chest. When you feel a stretch in your lower back and thighs, hold for 20 seconds. Relax and repeat with your other leg.
Turn in your chair and keep both of your feet flat on the ground. Hold on to the back of the chair firmly with both hands and twist toward the back of the chair while keeping your hips still. Repeat the stretch for both sides.
Standing stretches you can do on breaks or at the water cooler:
Standing Shoulders/Chest Stretch
Stand up straight. Lock your fingers together with your palms facing behind you. While keeping your chin tucked in, move your arms and your chest out. Hold the position for 15 seconds.
Standing Thigh Stretch
Lean your arm against a wall or desk. Keep your back straight and your knees parallel. Grab your ankle and lift it toward your butt. Hold that position for 20 seconds. Repeat the stretch with your other leg.