Do you find yourself usually sitting for long periods of time in the same position and posture? We as people spend up to 6-8 hours of a day sitting. Whether it’s at the office on the phone, watching TV on the couch, or commuting from a long day’s worth of work, all of those hours add up. The result? Potential risk for organ damage, increased susceptibility to diseases, as well as the wear and tear of your own body. We are meant to be regularly moving throughout the day. For every 45-60 minutes we spend sitting, we should be moving at least 15-20 minutes to compensate for that in order to live a healthier life.
I know, we’re all really busy, so I’ve provided three simple exercises below you could be doing while sitting that could significantly mitigate the effects of sitting and increase muscle motility:
- Shoulder & Neck Rolls
After sitting for prolonged periods of time, your neck and shoulder can start to get stiff before you even realize it. You may notice your hands start to feel cold, most likely due to lack of circulation. In order to ramp up your circulation, simply rotate your shoulders in a clockwise rotation while imagining that you’re squeezing an object (like a stress ball). You should complete 10 rotations and squeezes for every set. Do 5 sets over the course of 1-3 minutes, every 30 minutes or so to keep your body moving even the slightest bit.
For your neck, gently and slowly rotate clockwise as well as counterclockwise, 10 times and repeat for 3 sets over the course of 1-3 minutes, every 30 minutes or so. This will allow your blood to circulate better through key areas such as your head, spine, back, shoulders, and chest. Both of these can be extremely beneficial to keeping your shoulders, neck, and back motile in order to enable better blood circulation.
- Leg Rotations and Feet Curls
Legs and feet get cold from time to time? Simply sit upright with your back to the chair, position and raise your legs and feet parallel to your hips and roll counterclockwise and clockwise for 20 reps, curling your feet every time you complete 1 rep. Do this every 30 minutes or so in order to improve circulation to your lower body.
- Seated Jumping Jacks (Without The Jumping)
Warm up your upper body with some jumping jacks. Simply sit upright on your chair with your knees starting together. Extend your arms outward, making them perpendicular to your head and neck. Make sure your arms are facing outward and move your body just as you would a regular jumping jack for 30 reps. Start another set every 45 minutes for a jolt of energy and a warmed up body.
These exercise tips can be great for periods in where you just have to sit at your desk. However, don’t neglect getting up to do moderate exercises at least 3-4 times a week for a healthier mind and body!