Exercises to Do at Your Desk

Many of us have great intentions to get more exercise and movement in our lives, but the realities of our day-to-day routine often finds us spending most of the day sitting, either at our desks at work, or in front of the television in the evening. However, there are ways to get in some movement and simple exercises during the work day. Here are a few suggestions for workouts you can do in your office:

Chair Exercises

Now that you’re an adult, no one can tell you that you have to sit still in your chair! Here are a few easy but effective moves you can do from the comfort of your desk chair:

  • Calf Raises: sit with your feet on the floor, and lift your heels so your weight goes on to your toes, stretching your calves. Raise and lower several times.
  • Swivels: work your core and obliques by twisting back and forth
  • Quad extensions: lift one leg slightly off the seat of your chair. Extend your leg and contract your quadriceps (the muscles covering the front of your legs and sides of the thigh, above your knee) before lowering it back down.
  • Squats: stand up, then squat down until you lightly tap your chair, then stand back up again, squeezing the glute muscles as you do. Make sure your knees do not extend over your toes, as your legs should be in a 90-degree angle as you squat. You’ll feel this one the next day!
  • Rotating Toe Touches: raise one arm into the air, then swivel and bend towards the opposite foot. This not only engages your side muscles, but provides a nice stretch for the lower back.

Use Water Bottles as Weights

Fill your reusable bottle with water to give it some weight, and turn your cubicle into a makeshift gym. Do bicep curls, tricep bends, chest flys, and shoulder presses between your meetings and phone calls and watch your arms get stronger. When you are done exercising, use the water bottle for its original purpose to stay hydrated.

Rotate Between Sitting and Standing

Standing desks come in all sorts of configurations and price points these days—you can get motorized ones that raise and lower with a touch of a button, or platforms that sit on top of your current desk. Of course, you can always create your own raised desk by stacking a pile of thick books and balancing your laptop on top! Rotate sitting with standing throughout your work day to improve circulation and give your muscles and joints a break from being in the same position too long.

Walk and Stretch

Set a 5-minute timer for once in the morning, and once in the afternoon take a quick break for movement. Walk in place, stretch your arms over your head, do side bends and twists, and anything else that feels good and releases tension from your joints and muscles. Not only is it good for your body, but the movement will help stimulate you and keep you awake.

With tips like these, it’s easy to add more movement to your day. Check out other articles about healthy lifestyles at scrippsamg.com!

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