Long hours at your desk playing havoc with your posture? Try these quick fix stretches to ease those aching muscles.
The rest of the world have now become all too familiar with the reality long faced by freelancers that when working from home you tend to spend way more time at your desk than you do when you are at an office.
No getting up to fetch something from the printer… your printer is on your desk. No nipping over to chat with a colleague… what colleague? You don’t even have to venture very far for a cup of coffee or a comfort break.
It’s no wonder you have aches and pains from long sedentary hours glued to your desk.
The New York Times recently shared some top tips for three simple stretches from New York City-based physical therapist Abby Bales, and they are so super quick and easy, we thought we would share them with you.
Stretching improves blood flow to your muscles and can help relieve pain. These easy stretches take just minutes and are designed to relieve the strain on the main pressure points, the wrists, shoulders and upper body.
1. The wrists
Working all day on a computer will inevitably lead to the overuse of certain wrist muscles while others remain underused, so stretching the wrist flexors and extensors will help prevent the wrists from becoming locked into a limited range of movement, and potentially reduce the risk of repetitive strain injury.
Simply extend one arm out in front of you and with the other arm flex the hand up at a 90 degree angle to the wrist and hold for a few seconds, then repeat in a downward motion.
2. The shoulders
When working at a computer we tend to subconsciously raise our shoulders or allow them to slump forward while leaning our head towards our screen. By sitting up and doing a few shoulder shrugs and/or shoulder rolls we are resetting the shoulders to their correct position and helping to relieve any tension there-in.
3. The upper body
There are a number of upper-body muscles which have a tendency to contract when we are hunched over our computer all day. A quick remedy is to clasp your hands behind your head while drawing the shoulder blades together at the back which automatically causes the chest to expand, so releasing those contracted upper body muscles.
You should be feeling better, and possibly even more energised, in no time.
Posted by Julie Tucker (all exercises tried and tested)
Images courtesy of Press Association