Working at a desk, though you are sitting all day, can be exhausting. Being exhausted leads straight home after work for a night spent lounging in front of the TV. This lifestyle is unfortunate because it can lead to bad health as you age. From bad back & knees to being obese and having heart problems. A little extreme? Maybe. But for a lot of people this is reality.
Just because you are at a desk all day doesn’t mean you can’t do a little exercise to keep the blood flowing and to work out muscles that you are not using while sitting. Here are a few exercise you could try at your desk a couple times a day to get the best of your 8+ hours at work.
1: Leg Lifts
Leg lifts are simple exercises, just sit down (but up straight) and straighten your leg out until it is flat and hold it for two-three seconds, then rest and repeat with the other leg. Do this fifteen times in a row, and you may start feeling a burn.
2: Tricep Dips
Your chair has arms right? Well, you can use those arms to exercise your triceps. Simply place both hands on the chair arms and lift your bottom off the chair ten to twenty times in a row and then rest. Do a set of three then move on. Be careful while doing this because you will be lifting your feet off the grade, so make sure your chair doesn’t role off with you or tip over.
If you are not comfortable doing these in your chair, you can move to a desk and do triceps dips with your feet planted on the ground. Do three sets of twenty when doing these exercises.
3: Forearm Stretch
While these may not be strength training it does help relieve the symptoms of Carpal Tunnel. All you have to do is stand at your desk with your arms straight and backhand planted on the desk. Lower you body slowly until you start feeling your arms stretch and hold this position for ten to fifteen seconds. This exercise can be repeated as needed throughout the day.
4: Spinal Stretch
Stretching the spine will help both with flexibility and muscle strength and this requires little effort. All you need to do is sit straight up in your chair and stretch your arms toward the ceiling. Then put your right hand on the desk and grab the back of your char with your left hand and twist your body to the left. Hold this position for ten to fifteen seconds and then release and raise your hands up again. Repeat this with your other side and do as needed throughout the day.
5: Shoulder Stretch
Continuing the theme of flexibility, stretch your shoulders by sitting tall in your chair and reach your left hand behind your back. Then lift your left arm up to the ceiling and lower your right arm to the ground and bring the two of them together between the should blades of your back. If you can’t reach that is not a problem, go as far as you can go for now and you can hold onto your shirt to maintain position.. Hold this position for ten to fifteen seconds.
Squats don’t always need weights. Even without weights you will be strengthening your body. The best way to do squats at the desk is to lower your seat as far as it will go then stand in the front of your chair. Keep your feet hip’s width apart and lower your bottom until it is just above the seat and then stand up again. You can rest your arms on your hips or keep them out in front of you for balance. Do about twenty of these three times and you’ll start feeling the blood and endorphins flowing.
If you are too strong for these, try lifting your arms above your head or doing one leg at a time.
7: Push ups or Desk Push ups
Work out your upper body by doing push ups or desk push ups. The proper way to do a desk push up would be to put your feet about one yard (at least) away from your desk then lean forward and place both palms on the edge of your desk. Lower your chest to the edge of the desk and push back up. Do about twenty of these three times and you’ll be done.