Believe it or not, sitting is harder on your body than standing – especially if you sit in the same position for long periods. So take time out at least every hour for this three-minute, total-body stretch. You’ll work better and your body will feel better, too.
Hands and arms
Finger curl: Make a fist with each hand, but keep your thumbs out straight. Pull your fingers up your palm until your fingertips touch the base of your palm. Release.
Wrist stretch: Place one hand on the fingers of the other. Slowly bend wrist down until you feel a stretch. Hold three to five seconds and relax. Repeat three times. Then repeat bending upwards.
Arm stretch: Sit at your desk with elbows on the table. Keeping palms together, slowly lower your wrists to the table until you feel a stretch. Hold five to seven seconds. Repeat three times.
Neck and shoulders
Shrug: Pull your shoulders up to your ears, hold for three to five seconds, and relax. Repeat two to three times.
Neck incline: Sitting or standing with a straight back, relax your head to the right, trying to touch your ear to your shoulder, being careful not to raise your shoulder. Hold for three to five seconds and raise head. Repeat on right side, then forward. Repeat the sequence until tension is released.
Side stretch: Sitting in your chair with feet flat on the floor, reach your arms above your head and interlace your fingers. Press arms as far back as you can and hold a moment. Slowly lean to one side, hold for a few seconds and then return upright. Repeat on the other side.
Back curl: Holding your right shin just below your knee, lift leg off the floor while curling your back forward. Try to touch your nose to your knee. Hold for a moment. Lower leg and repeat on left side.
Open chest stretch: Sitting at the edge of your chair, pull arms behind you and interlace fingers with palms facing your back. Leaning slightly forward, lift arms up and try to place them on the chair back. Pull your shoulders down, away from your ears and take a few deep breaths before releasing.
Feet and legs
Ankle curl: Lift left leg straight in front of you. Flex and point foot, so toes stretch up to ceiling, then straight out. Repeat two to three times, then rotate foot in circles, clockwise three times, then counterclockwise. Repeat with right leg.
Please speak to your healthcare professional before starting any new exercise program.