Stretching is a good way to loosen up your tight and tired muscles after being glued to your computer the whole day.
This sedentary lifestyle takes a toll on our body which may lead to stiffness of the back, neck and may stress you out. Take a 5-10-minute break from your desk to maintain your physical and mental well-being.
Here are some stretching tips to keep that stiffness and stress at bay:
- Neck Roll. Tilt your head forward as far as you comfortably can and move it around, with the tip of your head doing a full circle around before returning to the starting position. Do 3-5 circles each time.
- Backward/Forward Shoulder Rolls. Lift your shoulders as high as you can. Just like how you would if you wanted to give someone the biggest shrug in the world. Then, slowly roll your shoulders back and around, pushing them their maximum position in each direction. Once you’ve done 3-5 circles, change the direction and roll the shoulders backward. Do forward shoulder roll for 3-5 times.
- Chest-Opener. Another stretch to help you alleviate the effect of slouching, join your hands behind your lower back which in turn will open up your chest and shoulders. Without bending your elbows, try bringing your hands up as high as you comfortably can. If you are standing, keep your feet shoulder-width apart and bend your hips forward as you bring your arms up. That would effectively stretch your lower back too.
- Spine Twist. While sitting on a chair, turn your shoulders around and grab the top of the chair with your hands and pull your shoulders around your back as far as you can without moving your hips. Hold this position for five seconds and then return to the starting position. Repeat the other way around.
- Standing side stretch. The side stretch exercise stretches and strengthens the intercostal muscles or the muscles between the ribs which support the ribs.
- Sit in a sturdy chair with your feet flat on the floor or stand with feet hip-width apart. Lean forward slightly to keep from “hunching” your back and shoulders. Keep your hips, shoulders, and ears in a straight up-and-down line.
- Raise your right arm overhead and bend your upper body to the left in a reaching motion. Keep your upper body facing straight ahead—don’t twist it to the side as you bend.
- Make sure you feel the muscles gently stretch all along your side from your lower back up to your shoulder. Hold the stretch for 20 seconds. Return to the starting position. Repeat the stretch 2 times. Switch sides and do the stretch in the opposite direction. Repeat twice.
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References: T3 Smart Living and University of Rochester