If you sit at a desk all day for work or lead a sedentary lifestyle, you are at risk for several health issues. Sitting at a desk for long periods of time can compromise your low back, neck, and spine. This position can also cause weak neck flexors, which can lead to a tilted forward head posture. Are you curious to learn how to fix this sh!t? Read along as we go over some desk stretches to help you improve your posture while at work.
Stretches to Do at Your Desk
Do you find yourself slumped over your desk while at work? If so, you might have poor posture, rounded shoulders, and/or weak neck flexors. To help, we are going to go over some exercises you can do at your desk to improve your posture:
Neck Flexor Stretch
Are your neck flexors weak? If you look at your posture and notice it needs some improvement, then you need to learn how to strengthen your neck flexors. Weak neck flexors tilt your head forward, which contributes to poor posture and a rounded or slumped forward posture. Here is how to do a neck flexor stretch and reduce forward head posture:
Step 1: Interlace your fingers behind your head.
Step 2: Create some resistance and push your head into your hands.
Step 3: Slowly release.
Text Neck Stretch (it's cute, we know)
Do you have text neck? If you have not heard of this phrase, it is what happens when you look down at your phone all day and develop a forward tilting head posture. Ok, so maybe you have to take one step away from your desk to do this, but so worth it. Strengthen your deep neck flexors with this stretch:
Step 1: Grab a small towel and roll it into a cylinder.
Step 2: Lie down on your back, place the towel behind your head, drive the back of your neck into the towel, and draw your chin in.
Step 3: Get into a glute bridge position. This will make it easier and intensifies the stretch as you continue to push that neck into the towel.
Step 4: Slowly lower your hips down as your neck continues to push into the towel.
Seated Spinal Twist
You might experience stiffness in your neck and shoulders from sitting at a desk all day. To relieve this, try a seated spinal twist. This stretch can also help you improve your posture.
Step 1: Seated, sit up tall in a neutral position.
Step 2: Place both hands on the outside of your right thigh.
Step 3: Twist over to the right bringing your gaze over your right shoulder (do not force the twist).
Step 4: Pause and breathe and then switch sides.
Relieve stiffness in the neck and shoulders with this easy-to-do stretch.
Sitting all day shortens your hamstring muscles and can give you an anterior pelvic tilt, which throws off your posture and can cause pain and muscle imbalances. Give your body a break while working and take a moment to do a hamstring stretch:
Step 1: Stand up and place the heel of your right foot on your chair (make sure your chair is stable and use a wall for support if needed).
Step 2: Lean forward leading with your chest until you feel a stretch in your hamstring.
Step 3: Breathe and then repeat on the other side.
Why Is Sitting All Day Is Harmful to Your Health?
Sitting at a desk or for an extended period is not good for your health. Here are some of the reasons why:
- Weight gain
- Muscle atrophy
- Tight hips
- Weak glutes
- Back pain
- Stiff shoulders and neck
Fortunately, there are active stretches and strengthening exercises you can do to improve your posture. The MoveU Head & Neck Program largely focuses on the strength and alignment of your neck, with a small dose of shoulder blades. Additionally, the MoveU membership (which also includes the Head & Neck Program among many others) can help you strengthen your entire body back into alignment, improving pain, posture, and performance so you can focus on living your best life.
Check out the MoveU membership online today.