Professionals who work all day in front of computers or on their office desks are the textbook case for the sedentary lifestyle. They have little physical activity due to the nature of their jobs, which usually include long hours of sitting down and hunching over documents, papers or the keyboard. Most office workers are out of shape and overworked. Not only that, sitting on a desk all day makes you prone to repetitive stress injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome.
Health is now the concern of everyone. Thanks to documentaries like "Supersize Me" and other investigative features that emphasize the unhealthy diets of many people in the developed world, many are now starting to be aware of their bodies and take care of their health. More and more people are now trying to take time to hit the gym and do outdoor activities to live a healthier lifestyle.
While most might have the will to change their lifestyle, it just never seems that feasible due to prohibitive schedules. Unfortunately, not all people have the luxury of time to take a couple of hours off a day to have a workout.
It may not be as good as going to the gym or breaking a sweat while running for an hour at the park. However, exercising at the office can certainly do you some good. With some common office supplies and furniture, you can easily turn your coffee breaks and lunch breaks into valuable workout time.
Though these routines may be low impact, you may want to consult your doctor before doing this set of exercises. Asking your manager, supervisor and other co-workers regarding your plans of exercising while on the job may also be a good idea. Though it's unlikely that it's against company policy, it's always good to inform those who might see you doing something out of the ordinary. These exercises may not burn fat or build muscles; but they do relieve stress.
Wrists and arms - The wrists and hands are probably the most overworked part of an office worker's body. Without much stretching and other forms of stimulation, fatigue brought about by repetitive movements can lead to scary complications such as carpal tunnel syndrome.
To prevent this, do these easy to do exercises.
- While sitting on your desk chair, extend your right arm (as if you're asking someone to stop) fully, making sure that the elbow is not bent. Use your left hand to pull your fingers towards you. Hold this for about 20 to 30 seconds. Repeat with the other arm.
- Put your palms together in front of your chest, keeping your forearm parallel to the floor. Push and shift your wrists from left to right. Do this alternately. This loosens your joints and relaxes your hand muscles after hours of typing away at your computer desk.
The Back - Sitting down for extended periods of time puts immense weight on your back, and if your desk chair is not ergonomic, you may be straining your back. Periodically stand up and stretch to relieve the stress of your back. You can also stretch your back while seated. Simply twist your torso from side to side in slow and repetitive movements to relieve the stiffness of your back muscles.
The Legs - The legs barely get any activity during the course of an office day, and you can develop swelled varicose veins. They are usually tucked behind a contemporary desk, never flinching until it's time for a break. While seated comfortably, kick up your leg until it is parallel to the floor. Try pointing your toes upward as high as possible. This should stretch and relieve the muscles of your calf, as well as encourage circulation. Doing this reduces the chances of you getting that pins-and-needles sensation in your lower body.
These exercises usually take no more than five to ten minutes per session. Remember to do at least one stretching exercise every 30 minutes. Even just standing up and walking around for a minute can help improve circulation.