5 Of the Best…....Desk Stretches
5 Of the Best Desk Stretches
Does this sound familiar… you sit to commute to work, you sit at your desk all day at work, you sit for lunch breaks, you then sit down to commute back home from work, and when you get home you sit and relax after a stressful day.
The sitting disease epidemic is at large! This is a real issue with real implications and there are many people, active or not, that suffer because of it. The way our society is evolving most people sit for longer than they’re standing, walking or running in the day. This means that your body will be more adapted to sit and do nothing, and as good as it is to go for a 30-60 minute run or to the gym for an hour a day, it won’t completely offset what you do for the other 6-16 hours you’re awake.
A great solution is to get a standing desk or a job where you stand most of the time, however, short of that the following simple stretches can break up the monotony of a desk job and will still allow you to get your job done. They are easy to do and will help offset some of the negative effects of sitting.
1) Forearm Stretch – face one palm up and use your other hand to bend your wrist back keeping your fingers and thumb included, then straighten your elbows. Hold for 30 seconds and repeat on the opposite side. This is a good one to help avoid carpel tunnel syndrome and reverse some of the effects of typing.
2) Chest Stretch – interlock your fingers and turn your palms facing out, then stretch your arms up overhead as far as you can keeping your elbows straight and stick your chest out. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds. This is great for opening up your chest and helping prevent a hunched back posture.
3) Neck Stretch – tilt your head to one side trying to touch your ear to your shoulder, keeping the shoulders relaxed, then gently use your hand to pull your head down to feel a stretch through the side of your neck and upper shoulder. Hold for 30 seconds and repeat on the opposite side. This is great for relieving stress and tension to avoid headaches and neck pain.
4) Thigh and Hip Stretch – standing up with one foot resting on your chair squeeze your glutes and tighten your abs to extend your hips forward. If you need a greater stretch move your chair back slightly further or put something on the chair to get your foot higher. This stretch is great for activating your glutes and loosening tightness in your hips and thighs to avoid knee pain.
5) Calf Stretch – put one leg back as far as you can and keeping your knee straight drive your heel down to the ground. You can also do this one with a shorter stride but with a bent knee to target the calf muscle lower down. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds and repeat on the opposite leg. This stretch is great for those who wear heels or dress shoes all day or to help prevent things such as plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendon problems.