Exercise at Your Desk

12:16 PM, Sep 25, 2012   |    comments
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Blair Moreau - Chair exercises

(BLAIR MOREAU - MERCY HEALTH PARTNERS) - Caution: Too much sitting down may be bad for your health. These days, it seem like everyone is sitting more and moving less. The average American is sitting for 7.7 hours a day and most of that is occurring at work. Our bodies are made to move, not sit at a desk for hours on end. Sitting causes many problems including backaches, neck pain, headaches, and fatigue. In fact, research shows too much sitting leads to low productivity. Have you ever had the following experience? Standing up from your chair, you walk like a robot for the first couple steps until your joints loosen? If you answered yes then, you are sitting too much and not moving enough. So, guess what, you can actually work out the kinks and get some significant exercise in your office.

• 60 second bursts - Every 30 minutes or so move for 60 seconds. Here are so examples of 60 seconds bursts.
o High knee marching - March in place bringing your knees as high as you can.
o Jump rope simulation - Pretend that you have a jump rope. Simulate the arm motion of turning the rope while alternately tapping your toes of each leg in front of you.
o Arm Pump/Foot Tap - While seated pump your arms over your head as fast as you can for 30 seconds. Then for another 30 seconds tap your feet as rapid as possible.
• Stay loose with stretching - Stretching exercises are a natural routine for the chair bound. To ease muscle tightness, try these simple stretches.
o Reach for the sky - Sitting tall in your chair, stretch both arms over your head and reach for the sky. After a couple seconds, extend the right hand higher then the left. Repeat for the left side. Repeat 10 times.
o Ear to shoulder stretch - Sit up straight, let your head fall so your right ear goes to your right shoulder. Using your hand, gently press your head a little lower do not force the stretch. Relax and hold for 10 seconds and then repeat to the left side. Perform the activity 3 times each side.
o Shoulder blade contraction - I love this activity. Sit up straight and try to touch your shoulder blades together. Hold for five seconds and then relax. Repeat 10 times.

Ease muscle stiffness from sitting too much and experience the benefits of these exercises while at work.

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