Eighty percent of the American workforce has a sedentary job. Considering that a full-time schedule requires around 40 hours per week, that’s a lot of sitting around.
Although sitting seems harmless enough, it actually takes a severe toll on your body. In fact, sitting too long can even degenerate your spinal health. It can cause the discs to wear out prematurely.
Sitting for long periods of time increases your risk of obesity, heart disease, cancer, anxiety, depression, deep vein thrombosis, and chronic pain. To find out how you can minimize your risk, check out the stretches for office workers below.
Best Stretches for Office Workers
If you work in an office and find yourself sitting for most of the day, dedicate some time to these stretches. Plan them into your downtime and find a convenient place to do a few of these regularly. You can even get your coworkers to join you and start an unofficial health initiative.
1. Spinal Rotations
With this exercise, you’ll be like your own private chiropractor. The best part is you can do it without leaving your chair.
Take your right hand and grab your left shoulder. Then, take your left hand and grab your right shoulder. Turn from side to side slowly, stretching as far as you can. You should feel it in your back, but it shouldn’t hurt.
2. Back Extensions
This is another convenient stretch for the efficiency-minded employee as you don’t have to leave your desk. Flatten the inside of your hands against the small of your back and lean against them. This will stretch your lower back.
3. Shoulder Extensions
This stretch can be done in two ways. First, you can link your fingers together and reach over your head with your palms face-up. Alternatively, you can reach behind you, put your hands together, and slowly lift your arms. Make sure not to go too far and cause an injury.
4. Chair Squats
Squats are more of an exercise than a stretch, but they definitely get your blood flowing and lower your risk of disease. These require a little more effort than a basic stretch, but you don’t have to leave your work area.
You can stand in front of your chair and lower yourself until you barely touch it. Make sure your feet are shoulder length apart and you keep your back straight. You can repeat this exercise in sets or until you feel tired.
5. Wrist Stretches
Anyone who types should get into the habit of wrist stretching. It’s very simple and quick to do.
Extend one arm in front of you and pull that hand upward with the opposite hand. Repeat this stretch with the opposite arm. You can hold the stretch for a few seconds each time.
More Health and Lifestyle Tips
These stretches for office workers can be applied to any employee of any industry, even if you already do moderate activity in the workplace. Performing them routinely is easy and can improve your health.
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