Everyone knows that sitting down for prolonged periods of time, for example working at a desk all day before coming home to work at a desk again, is pretty bad for your health. So I’ve come up with a small range of exercises I like to do at my desk, so then I feel better about my sedentary lifestyle and hopefully won’t end up a hunchback at 40. I thought I’d share some of my favourites, so that everyone else can look silly, but do themselves some good, too:
1 Everything rests on your SHOULDERS
Good for: back and posture
Description: Stand up and give those shoulders a roll. Then squeeze your shoulders together as much as you can – it’s okay if it looks like you’re doing the funky chicken. Hold this for 10 seconds, and then release.
2 The paper PUSHer
Good for: arms
Description: Put both hands on your desk and step back until your body is at a 45 degree angle. Then do some push ups. Good for those of us who can’t quite do a proper push up yet!
3 The WEIGHT of this knowledge is too great
Good for: arms
Description: Find the heaviest book you can, this will often be an unused dictionary. Stand with your feet shoulder with apart. Hold the book behind your head, then raise it to a stretch. Lower it back down. Repeat until the weight of the knowledge of this great exercise is too great
4 SEALing the deal
Good for: stress relief, arms and abs
Description: Okay so you have to do this one beside your desk, but I love it so much I had to include it. It’s somewhere between a seal push up and yoga. Bend down to touch your toes, then walk your hands, keeping your legs straight, until your body is at 90 degrees (downward dog). Push your body forward so your chest is over your arms, and let your back bow (cobra). Then push back into the first position. If you want to work out your arms more, bend them as you move forward so that your body scoops upward.
5 I ain’t done SQUAT
Good for: butt and thighs
Description: About a step in front of your chair, stand feet shoulder width apart. Then squat until your butt just touches the chair. Stand back up and repeat until your legs are saying “I don’t think your ready for this jelly”.
6 I’m TRI-ing my best
Good for: arms
Description: Facing away from your desk take a step forward. Then, standing with your feet shoulder width apart, put your hands back on the desk and lower your body to a pseudo-seated position. Raise back up, and repeat, feeling those triceps burn.
7 Up against the WALL
Good for: quads
Description: Stand with your back up against the wall, then slid down til your legs are bent at 90 degrees. Hold this squat for as long as you can before sliding back up the wall. Repeat if you’re brave.
8 I’m TIP TOEing around this client
Good for: calves
Description: Stand with your feet together behind your chair, holding the back if you need it for balance, raise your self up onto you tip toes. Hold for it for 5 seconds, and then lower. For added difficulty don’t lower yourself all the way back down to the ground.
9 I’ve ABSolutely got to have that RAISE
Good for: abs and thighs
Description: Sitting down, straighten and raise one leg just off the chair and hold for 10 seconds. Then lower it back down to the floor. Repeat on the other side. If you’re feeling wild try raising both legs at once!
NB: These exercises should be done responsibly, and do not guarantee to make you look like Beyonce.