4/05/2013

OFFICE FITNESS: EXERCISE RIGHT AT YOUR DESK!

If you work in an office, you most likely use a computer. With all those deadlines to meet, you probably find yourself sitting and typing for an average of eight hours per day. Whilst this may be good for your company, your body is crying out for help! Sitting long hours may bring about backaches due to poor posture and eye strain, among other effects. There are simple exercises you could do at your desk. These exercises can be done at intervals and will improve your body’s flexibility and strength, relieve job-related stress, increase your energy levels, and ultimately, keep you healthier and happier during your work day.
  • Maintain proper sitting posture. Your back should be straight, your shoulders back. 
  • Neck stretch: slowly flex your head forward and backward and side to side, round in circles, and twist to look over each shoulder. Remember to do this slowly and gently. 
  • Shoulder roll: Roll your shoulders forward (10 counts), then backward. This helps release the tension off your shoulders. 
  • Shoulder release: Sit tall in your chair and reach your left hand behind your back, between your shoulder blades, palm out. Then reach your right hand up toward the ceiling, bend it down, and try to touch your left hand. If you can reach it, great: Hold for 10 seconds. 
  • Side Stretch: Stand with your feet inches apart. Stretch your right hand over your head to the opposite side, your torso bending towards the direction of your stretched arm. You can keep the other hand on your hip. This exercise can also be performed sitting. 
  • Arm Circles: Standing with your feet inches apart, stretch out both arms to the side. Move both arms around in big circles, forward and then backward. Do one arm at a time and then both arms together. 
  • Quad Stretch and Balance: Stand on one leg and stretch out your quadriceps muscle by bending your knee and pulling your foot to your buttocks. Be sure to do it on both legs. 
  • Seated Forward Fold: Push your chair away from your desk and place your right leg up on the desk. Your leg should be stretched out. Flex your foot and lean forward slightly over your leg while keeping your back straight. Hold for 10 seconds. Point your foot, lean and hold for ten seconds. Switch legs and repeat. 
  • Squats: Using proper technique, do twenty repetitions of stationary squats. 
  • Walks: Take short walks around the office. Rather than send the office clerk to get your printed documents, take a walk and do it yourself. If you work on the seventh floor, you could use the stairs instead of the elevator.
  • Abdominal crunches: You could do some forward and side crunches while sitting in your chair. 
  • Rest your eyes occasionally from staring at the computer screen. 
  • Drink lots of water. Having a bottle of water at your desk encourages you to drink more. 
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