Video: Sitting Too Long? Do This Stretch
Working from home has become the norm for many people during the pandemic. And while some savor their new working conditions, others don’t. One common complaint from people who work from home is that they have newfound aches and pains they never had before.
One main cause of these complaints is that people often don’t work under the most ideal conditions for their bodies when their office is the kitchen table, living room couch or bed. In the office, you may have an ergonomically-designed workspace that reduces the likelihood you’ll strain muscles in your back, hips, shoulders and neck while you work.
At home, your working conditions often have you sitting at the wrong height or looking at your computer from an awkward angle. You may also be sitting more than usual because there are no meetings to attend or co-workers’ desks to walk to. You don’t even have very far to go when it’s time for lunch or you need to go to the bathroom.
One way to combat all the extra sitting you’re doing is to stretch. Just a few minutes a day of stretching can help reduce stiffness and ease aches and pains.
Watch this video or follow the instructions below to do an easy stretch right from your chair:
- Sit forward on the edge of your chair, with your feet parallel and under your knees.
- Inhale and lengthen your spine upward.
- Exhale and relax your shoulders down, away from your ears.
- Inhale and lift the right leg.
- Exhale and bring your knee to your chest, holding the shin or back of the thigh.
- Hold for a minute.
- Guide the right leg to cross the left thigh, placing your ankle on the outside of the thigh. Open your leg to the side.
- Inhale and place your hands on your upper thighs, close to the hips.
- Flex your right foot and exhale as you lengthen your spine while you lean forward.
- Hold for five to eight breaths. You should feel the stretch on the outside of your right hip. If you feel pain in the right knee, stop the pose.
- When you’re ready, release. Then repeat on the other side.
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Date Last Reviewed: March 1, 2021
Editorial Review: Andrea Cohen, Editorial Director, Baldwin Publishing, Inc. Contact Editor
Medical Review: Andrew P. Overman, DPT, MS, COMT, CSCS