The view from over our computer screens may have changed since the pandemic, with work from home reigning supreme for many. However, one thing that hasn’t changed is our computers being the center of our work world. Spending hours on screen can be draining, and it’s essential to be mindful of our bodies and take care of ourselves; one great way to do this is to use these six easy stretches throughout your day. They are all desk-friendly, and your back will thank you!
- Focus- Neck
- Sitting up straight, slowly tilt your head to your right side and gently lift your right hand to the top of your head to extend the stretch. Do this on either side for 5-10 seconds each and repeat when needed.
- Focus- Shoulders
- Extend your hands in front of you and intertwine your fingers, palms facing away from your body. Hold this position for 5-10 seconds if you want a little more stretch to push into your hands slightly.
- Focus- Back
- For this stretch, you can sit, but it works better standing. Reach your right hand over your head in a sweeping motion resting your left hand on your hip. Hold here for 5-10 seconds and switch.
- Focus- Hands
- Hand stretches are not as widely discussed, but with our hands in constant motion between our computers and phones, they deserve some love. Reach your arms straight out in front of your hands in fists, roll your wrists in circles after five circles, and switch and roll counterclockwise. Now straighten out your fists, and with your palms facing away from you, use one hand to pull your fingers back towards your chest. Everybody’s flexibility is different so take this slow.
- Focus- Legs
- This one does require you to stand. Standing straight, pull your leg back, pointing your toes as if to reach up and touch your toe to your behind, and hold your foot here. You can use your desk or a nearby wall to steady yourself. Again everybody’s flexibility is different, so if you can’t fully tuck your knee back on the first go, that’s OK stretching takes practice. Over time, this and the other stretches will become easier. We recommend 15 seconds on each side to start.
- Focus- Shoulders and upper arms
- Take your right arm horizontally across your chest, and take your left hand at a vertical angle over your arm. You should feel this one on the outside of your upper arm. Hold here for 15 seconds each.
Doing these stretches once or twice a day will help you feel less tension and looser as you leave whatever your office is for you and continue your day.