Stretches for work

What Are the Best Desk Stretches to Do at Work?

Do you spend at least five hours a day sat down working at your desk? Like many British office workers, it is actually proven that British people sit for 8.9 hours each day (according to healthline). That’s over one third of the day in total! Research revealed that 73% of employees rarely leave their desks, giving lasting serious health implications for many.

Here at Harmoni we want to put your health first which is why we’ve designed a standing desk which will improve your productivity and provide many health benefits. Our ergonomically designed standing desk is made from high quality Birch Plywood with a satin sheen finish to provide you with a stylish stand which you can easily adjust to suit you. Inspired by Japanese minimalism and Scandinavian décor, our desk stand creates warmth and comfort in your home.

Alongside using a desk stand, we’ve put together our top stretches we recommend doing at work. Help avoid aches and pains associated with being sedentary and increase your daily activity!

 

1. Head stretch

  • Rotate your head to one side, hold the stretch for five seconds and then rotate your head to the opposite side.

  • It is really important to maintain good posture whilst doing so.

  • Additionally, try tilting your head downward.

  • Try to meet your chin to your chest.

  • Grasp the back of your head with one hand, pressing very lightly to intensify the stretch and the back of the neck and the upper back.

head stretch to do at work

 2. Wall press

  • Stand with your feet hip-width apart.

  • Place your arms against the wall at shoulder height slightly wider than shoulder-width apart.

  • Take a couple of steps backwards so that your are leaning in slightly and engage your core.

  • Keep your back and neck straight and look directly at the wall in front.

  • Lower yourself until you are a couple of inches away from the wall and then push back up to return to your starting position.

  • Do not bend your knees or allow your back to curve, instead make sure your arms are doing the work.

  • Do these ten times, pause and then repeat twice more.

wall press stretch to do while working

 3. Leg stretch

  • Standing on your left leg, raise your right heel upwards, clasp your hands around your foot and hold the stretch.

  • You should feel a stretch along the front of your thigh.

  • Hold the stretch for twenty seconds, repeat three times and then switch legs.

stretching legs at work

4. Sit stretch 

  • You can do this stretch either sitting or standing.

  • Place one arm behind your back, with the other arm reach your elbow upwards and place your arm on your back.

  • Try to grasp your hands to touch behind your back.

  • Hold the stretch for twenty seconds and repeat three times, changing arms.

Stretched to do at work

 5. Chest stretch

  • This stretch can be done either sitting or standing. If you are sitting, make sure you are sat forward from the back of your chair. If standing, make sure you have good posture before beginning the exercise.

  • Lock your hands together and push your arms towards the ceiling. Ensure your shoulders are relaxed and pull your shoulder blades together.

  • Tilt to the side and hold this stretch for twenty seconds before stretching to the other side.

  • Repeat this stretch three times on each side.

Chest and shoulders stretch to do at work 

What are the best benefits for stretching at work?

There are many health benefits and positive reasons why you should stretch at work. According to a recent study undertaken by the CSP (Chartered Institute of Psychology), 31% of people experience pain at work at least once a week, with back pain reported as the most common physical problem (65%), followed by shoulder pain (37%), and neck pain (37%). Back pain is one of the most common injuries caused by sitting down for too long. In order to compensate for the hours we spend sat at a desk, some gentle, daily stretches can help to counteract the potential damage.

Not only will you reduce fatigue by stretching (increasing blood supply and nutrients to your muscles), you will also improve your posture and even increase your muscle coordination and balance. By stretching regularly, you will not only prevent long-term injury but wake up your muscles to prevent muscle strain injuries. A simple head stretch will stretch the muscles at the back and sides of your neck which extend into your head. Given that The Department of Health estimate that there are 9.6 million adults and around 12,000 children with musculoskeletal conditions in England, by doing some gentle stretches you will reduce the time you take off work which is currently calculated as costing the UK economy £7.4 billion a year.

If you suffer from back pain, we recommend watching this video which includes exercises given by expert Physio Alishah Merchant from Rebalance Sports Medicine Physiotherapy & Chiropractic.

 

 

Standing desks are a great tool to help improve your energy levels and productivity at work. Our Harmoni standing desk has been ergonomically designed to help you work at your optimum. Boost your mental and physical health by opting to stand rather than sit. We also recommend that you take regular breaks to increase your movement. You can also try walking around the room if you are taking a phone call.

Sedentary work is associated with countless serious health issues, so we’ve taken a stand. Standing to work burns more calories, reduces blood sugar spikes, increases spinal alignment and boosts the supply of oxygen-rich blood cells reaching the brain. All of this keeps you feeling alert, motivated and, above all, healthy.

 

Conclusion

Prioritise your physical and mental health by doing some gentle desk stretches at work. By making some small, daily adjustments you will reap the long-term health benefits. We all spend so much time sitting down throughout the day, so why not invest in a standing desk. Our Harmoni desk stand is lightweight and portable so you can easily set up your workspace easily. Transport your Harmoni desk stand from your office to your home and set up the stand within minutes.
 
 

Sources

<https://www.csp.org.uk/public-patient/keeping-active-healthy/staying-healthy-work/desk-based-exercises>
 
< https://harmoni.design/products/harmoni-stand>
 
‘Physiotherapy Exercises for Low Back Pain’ <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ry-UGHYg7Us
 
‘How to Stretch Head Muscles to Relieve Tightness’ by Nicole Vulcan  https://livehealthy.chron.com/stretch-head-muscles-relieve-tightness-4140.html


‘Benefits of Stretching at Work’ < https://blog.societyinsurance.com/benefits-of-stretching-at-work/>


‘British people sit for 8.9 hours each day on average’ <https://saif.org.uk/2016/04/british-people-sit-for-8-9-hours-each-day-on-average/>
 
‘Stretched to the Limit – Chartered Society of Physiotherapy’ Full Report, January 2012