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Stretches you can do in your office

Stretches you can do in your office

Are you working hard at your desk? Or perhaps staring at a computer all day long? And maybe sitting most of the day with minimal breaks? Office life is a reality for many of us, and as a result, the end of a work day often leaves us not only mentally exhausted, but also physically tight, sore and achy.

So, what’s a little something you can do that’ll make the world of difference? Stretching, of course!

To avoid pain, feeling worn out and essentially burnt out…make sure you take a stretch break every 20 – 30 minutes. Not only will this will encourage oxygen and blood flow, but it will also get your body moving and give you a mental break. After all, who doesn’t feel fabulous after a good stretch?!

 

Here are some of our favourite stretches that you can do in your office (or in any location…uni, cafe, library, bus, train…it doesn’t matter to us!)

Finger Stretch

It seems like many of spend our time clutching a pen or typing on a keyboard. If this sounds like you, start with the finger stretch. Firstly, separate and straighten your fingers until you feel a stretch, keeping your hand in alignment with your wrist (left image). Hold for 10 seconds. Next, bend the end and middle knuckles of your fingers, keeping your hand and wrist in the same position (right image). Hold for 10 seconds. Relax and then repeat on your other hand.

Back Stratch

Reach behind your head and place your hand on your upper back, keeping your arm close to your ear (so that it looks like you’re scratching your back). Gently hold your elbow with your opposite hand. Next, pull your elbow towards the back of your head and reach your hand towards the middle of your back until you feel a gentle stretch. Hold for 10 – 15 seconds. Relax and then repeat on the other side.

Arm and Shoulder Stretch

First, lace your fingers together and turn your palms facing out. Next, straighten your arms in front of you and press your hands away from your body to stretch your arms and shoulders. Hold for 10 – 20 seconds. Relax and then repeat 2 – 3 times.

Chest Stretch

Start by lacing your fingers together behind your head, bringing your elbows back as far as possible. Next, squeeze your shoulder blades together until you feel your muscles stretching. Hold for 20 seconds. Relax and then repeat. (This is one of our favourite office stretches!)

Side Neck Stretch

Face forward and look straight ahead. Tilt your head toward one side, gently pushing your ear towards your shoulder. Hold for 10 – 15 seconds. Lift your head back into a normal upright position. Relax and repeat 3 – 5 times on each side.

Head Turn

Facing forward, slowly turn your head and look to one side until your chin is parallel with your shoulder. Be sure to keep your shoulders straight ahead. Hold for 5 – 10 seconds. Return to your starting position and relax. Repeat twice on each side.

Chin Tuck

This will help loosen stiff neck and shoulder muscles. Facing forward, keep your back straight and pull your chin toward your chest until you feel a stretch along the back of your neck. Hold for 5 – 10 seconds. Return to your starting position and relax. Repeat 2 -3 times.

Shoulder Shrug

Slowly bring your shoulders up towards your ears. Hold for 3 – 5 seconds, then roll your shoulders back and down. Repeat 5 – 10 times.

Back Stretch

Firstly, sit forward in your chair so that there’s a little room between your back and the chair. Face forward and cross your right leg over your left. Next, put your left hand on your right knee, and gently pull it towards your left side while slowly turning your head and shoulders to the right. Keep turning until you see the wall behind your right shoulder. Be careful not to force the turn – just go until you feel a nice stretch in your back. Hold for 10 – 15 seconds. Relax and then repeat on the other side. (Another of our favourite office stretches!).

Enjoy this stretch sequence and how good you feel once you’re done! In essence, stretching is a fantastic way to release tension from your body, decrease aches and pains, and help you feel better mentally. Of course, be careful not to overstretch – these gentle moves should feel good, never painful. If you’d like some more stretches, some more tips on how to manage aches and pains, or if you have any questions at all, please contact us on [email protected] To book an osteopathic treatment, acupuncture, massage or naturopathy, book here.