Health & Exercise: Stretch at Your Desk

Nowadays, as more and more people are becoming desk-bound, either at work or working from home, a sedentary lifestyle is becoming the norm. Sitting for prolonged hours either in front of the office desk or TV can affect your health so much that physicians are now considering calling it a disease. However, the risk can be mitigated by getting up and walking about and doing some mild exercises.

Here we have for you a few exercises which you can do at your desk whether at your home or in your office. In this edition we start with upper body stretches.

Stretches:

Neck Roll:

Relax your shoulders and lean your head slightly forward. Slowly roll your head in a circle clockwise 10 times. Repeat counter clockwise for 10 times.

Shoulder Stretch:

Clasp your arms above your head with the palms facing upwards towards the ceiling. Stretch your arms up and hold for a count of five. Push your clasped arms back as far as you can go and hold it for a count of five. Repeat twice.

Shoulder Roll:

Keep your back straight and your elbows loose. Lift your shoulders toward your ears and make circles with your shoulders by gently rolling them forward, down, back and up. Repeat ten times. Reverse the direction of the shoulder rolls and repeat 10 times.

Chest Stretch: Behind the back

Start with arms hanging down by your sides and your shoulders pressed down and away from your ears. Gently squeeze your shoulder blades together and bring your arms behind the back to grip elbow to elbow.

Chest Stretch: Above the head

Interlock your fingers, bend your elbows and raise your arms above your head. Squeeze your shoulder blades together while bringing your hands and elbows backward.

Upper Back Stretch: Butterfly Wings

Place your arms on your shoulders (left arm on the left should and right arm on the right shoulder). Keeping your hands in place (without pushing down or applying any pressure to your shoulders) pull your elbows together as if you were trying to touch them. Hold for a count of 5 and then pull them apart and back until you feel the stretch. Hold for a count of 5. Repeat twice.

Upper Back Stretch: Chair Rotation

Sit forward at the edge of your chair but make sure you do not lose your balance. Sit straight, interlock your hands at the back of your head, and keep your elbows pointing outward. Slowly twist your upper body to one side until it is facing that side completely. Your hips should be facing forward. Hold for a count of 5 and come back to the beginning position. Repeat on the other side for a count of 5.