Schedule morning stretches into your day to ease back and shoulder pain
Get the jump on aches and pains with some good morning exercises
Are you sitting down for this? Research continues to show that sitting for more than four hours a day can contribute to back pain, neck pain, muscle degeneration, and osteoporosis. Plus heart disease, cancer and diabetes. It’s confronting; yet it’s not ‘new’ news.
As we embrace and expand digital solutions across society, many of us are tied to working to a computer day-in, day-out. But the fact is, the sedentary nature of desk work is a leading factor towards lower back pain, sore wrists, neck pain, shoulder pain, tight hips, and eye strain. Therefore, day-in and day-out, these are the common issues we treat as chiropractors.
However, even if you work in an office or are temporarily set-up to work from home, you can still enhance how active you are throughout your day. Small changes, like some morning stretches, can have a big impact on your spinal health.
How often should you do desk stretches?
If your day job requires you to sit behind a desk for eight hours a day, you can still include more movement in your day. Adding regular morning stretches to your office day pumps blood to your inactive muscles which helps fight fatigue and discomfort.
Between emails, Zoom meetings and Slack messages, time can move quickly on a work day. So, the simplest way to ensure you don’t miss an opportunity to move is to schedule it. Set an alarm about 45 minutes after the start of your work day and complete a series of desk stretches (there’s some ideas below). Remember to hold each stretch for at least 15 seconds and do as many as you can. For optimal results, plan in three rounds of stretches each day. That’s a session mid-morning, lunch and mid-afternoon!
What stretches are desk-friendly?
It’s possible to perform neck, shoulder and chest stretches right at your desk. However, if you have the opportunity to leave your desk and stand to do some exercises – do it!
Here’s a series of three videos with common neck, shoulder and chest stretches that you can do to alleviate muscle tightness from sitting at your computer all day.
Watch this three-minute demonstration by Dr. Greg Sher for a sequence of stretches to reduce neck tension.
Shoulder & Rotator Cuff Stretch
Here Dr. Greg Sher demonstrates a rotator cuff stretch (1 minute):
Mid Back and Chest Stretches
Follow Dr. Greg Sher through a series of stretches for your mid back and chest (4 minutes):
At Sydney Spine and Sports Clinic, we put you first. We believe in offering chiropractic care that enables you to make informed and educated choices about your health. We can help you find relief for back pain, neck pain, shoulder pain, and hip pain plus treat common conditions like sciatica and headaches. If you are suffering pain and would like to talk to us about how we can help you get mobile and active again – contact us to make an appointment.