Amidst busy life schedules, we often cut down time for exercise, we feel like sleeping a little more before getting into the busy run of life, mentioned below are some simple stretching exercises, especially for those home/office workers, who are glued to their desks working on their computers for an average of 10 hours or more per day and this has become a normal routine. However, sitting at the computer all day may not exactly be good for the body, as it can bring about numerous health problems like backaches due to poor posture, eye strain, and among other ailments. On the other hand, there are some simple steps that one can follow in order to improve posture and to keep up the health.
While working long hours in front of the computer, these tips will help you stretch your arms, legs, neck and body while sitting. This will help you relax and prevent you from feeling stiff and diseased. These are some of the simple steps, but if you are already suffering from some problem do consult with your doctor, before initiating any exercise.
Flexing Neck: To stretch your neck, flex your head forward/backward, side to side and look right and left. This can be done almost any time to lessen tension and strain. Never roll your head around your neck. This could cause damage to the joints of the neck.
Rolling Shoulders: Roll your shoulders forward around 10 times, then backward. This helps release the tension off your shoulders.
Stretching Arms and Shoulders: A good stretch for your arms and shoulders is to brace your hands on the edge your desk, each about a shoulder width away from your body. Twist your hands in so they point toward your body and lean forward, hunching your shoulders. Take this a step further and push your shoulders and elbows closer to the desk.
Rolling Wrists: Roll your wrists regularly, around every hour or so. Roll the wrists 10 times clockwise, then 10 times counter clock wise. This will help prevent Carpal Tunnel Syndrome if you spend a lot of time typing.
Rolling Ankles: Roll your ankles regularly. As with your wrists, roll the ankles in a clockwise motion 3 times, then counter clockwise. This helps improve blood circulation, and prevents that tingling feeling you can get when blood circulation is cut off, also known as “Pins and Needles”.
Chest: Notice if you tend to hunch in front of the keyboard. To counter that, perform the following exercise: open your arms wide as if you are going to hug someone, rotate your wrists externally (thumbs going up and back) and pull your shoulders back. This stretch is moving your body the opposite way to being hunched and you should feel a good stretch across your upper chest.
Abdomen Contraction: Contract your abdominal and gluteal muscles, hold them there for a few seconds, then release. Repeat this for every few minutes all day long while you are working at your desk.
Stretching Calves: Stretch your calves, while sitting, lift up your legs on the balls of your feet and set them down. Repeat until your legs are comfortably tired. Repeat after about 10 minutes later, and continue doing this routine for about an hour or so. This will exercise your calves, and will help prevent blood clots from developing in your legs. Blood clots are seen very commonly among middle-aged computer users, especially those who are engaged in long hour of work on computers, those who are on medical transcription jobs.
Stand up and walk around: Every half hour, will ensure continuous blood circulation into your arms and legs, and will keep them from getting too strained. Take walks to the water station or cafeteria. If you can afford to take longer breaks, take a short walk outside your building, and use the stairs instead of the elevator to go down. Aside from giving your legs and heart a good workout, you would be able to take in fresh air as well.
Eye Break: Give your eyes a break from continuously focusing on your computer screen. Every 30 minutes or so, shift your focus from the computer screen and scan around other subjects in the room, such as a window, clock, desk, or door. This helps promote eye movement and lessens chances of eye irritation and headaches. Another technique to relax your eyes would be to rub your hands together, then place your cupped hands over your eyes.
Deep breath’s: Taking deep breaths will work your abdominal muscles, hold your stomach for a few seconds when breathing in, then release when breathing out. If possible, get some fresh air in your lungs by taking a walk outside.
Though these tips would help you relax, but these tips aren’t alternatives for proper regular exercise, if you don’t exercise regularly, it is better you start today, A simple way to start is walking. Studies have shown that walking 2 miles-a-day cuts the risk of death almost in half! 30 minutes a day also works because it reduces as much risk of a heart attack as a highly intense exercise.