Sedentary lifestyles are bringing us down. Literally. The average person sits for around 7.7 hours per day, although some studies estimate that to be more like 15 hours. Thanks to desk exercises and tons of jobs that can now be done online, we’re sitting now more than ever.
But working at a computer doesn’t have to be all bad. Check out these desk exercises that will help strengthen your muscles and get your blood flowing all while you’re getting work done at your computer.
1. Calf Raises
If you have a surface in your home that’s a comfortable height to stand at while typing, don’t be afraid to utilize it. A kitchen countertop or a clothes dryer may be the right height for some. Otherwise, taller individuals can purchase a standing desk—or even an adjustable desk—so they can spend a few hours per day on their feet without sacrificing any work time.
While you’re standing, small calf raises are a great exercise that, in many cases, won’t impede your concentration or productivity. If you have a tough time standing, concentrating, and typing at the same time, then only stand when you’re performing simple duties like reading emails (instead of sending them).
If you’re not one for standing, or you can’t find a surface for standing at work, feel free to do calf raises at your desk. Simply pull your heels off the floor while keeping your toes firmly planted to flex your calves.
2. Leg Lifts
When standing at your desk is impractical, then take to exercising in your chair. When in a seated position, simply pull your knees up toward your desk, raising your toes a few inches off the ground. Hold for a few seconds if comfortable. Drop your feet to the floor, and repeat. You can change up this exercise by extending your legs out in front of you and raising and lowering your legs while you work.
3. Shin Flexes
If you can work out your calves while at work, then you can work out your shins. If you manage to squeeze in some time to go running after you clock out, this can also help prevent shin splints. While sitting at your chair, simply perform the opposite of calf raises. Instead of pulling your heel up, lift your toes while keeping your heels firmly planted.
4. Buttocks Squeezes
If you’re afraid of your coworkers eyeing you strangely for desk exercises, a few sets of buttocks squeezes will help you tone up without anyone even realizing what you’re doing. Simply flex your buttocks, hold for a few seconds, and then release. Repeat this exercise as you work, and you should have a perkier bum in no time!
5. Foot Taps
Have you ever seen football players during warm-ups? One exercise they do is to tap their feet rapidly as if running in place. Do the same thing at your desk exercises. For 30 seconds at a time, simply tap your feet quickly beneath your chair. Simple as that!
6. Chair Squats
If you don’t have a ton of coworkers around to laugh at you, then chair squats can be a great workout option. All you have to do is raise your buttocks off your chair a few inches, hold for a few seconds, and then sit back down. Repeat. There’s no need to feel like you have to stand all the way up since it can be hard to get to work on your computer at the same time. An inch or two of your chair is all you need to start “feeling the burn.”
7. Toe Circles
Get some blood circulating through your lower extremities as you sit. Raise one leg until it’s off the ground, and then rotate your ankle in a circle 10 times. Reverse and repeat in the opposite direction, Perform the same exercise with the other foot.
8. Take a Break
Yep, we said it. While taking a break doesn’t help you get any work done in the meantime, it can make you more productive and get your blood flowing in between work sessions. Take a five-minute break and walk to the drinking fountain, or make a stop at a coworker’s desk. If you have a few minutes of break left after eating lunch, don’t be afraid to try some of these other desk exercises. (Be warned that some of them aren’t practical while working at your computer, but you can still use your desk as a workout tool.)
Other options to get your exercise in on your break include walking a few flights of stairs, taking a quick power-walk through the hallway, or even working in a few sit-ups in the break room.
How do you find time to get moving during work when you’re always at a computer? Tell us in the comment section.
Also Read: 8 Health Benefits Of Spontaneity