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Best Stretching Exercises to do in the Office

Updated on March 4, 2012

Being in the office all day sitting in your chair will really cause strain on your back. Worst, it may cause slip disc, muscle stiffnes, scoliosis, etc which can bring serious back pain. To prevent back pain, you can do some stretching exercises without leaving your work station.

Exercises for the upper extremities:

  • While sitting, you can extend your arm in front, with palm up and then grab your fingers with the other hand. Gently apply a pull down to stretch the forearm. Do it on the other hand as well.
  • To stretch your wrist and forearm, press your hands together in front of your chest, with elbows bent and should be parallel to the floor. Gently apply pressure to your hands so your wrists will bend to the right and left.
  • While sitting, keep your stomach in and spine straight. Hold an object with enough weight on one hand then raise it up to shoulder level. Hold the position for 5 seconds then repeat on the other side.
  • Hold the object again in your right hand, with elbow bent, then extend the arm overhead. Repeat on your left hand.
  • Hold the object in your right hand, with your stomach in and spin straight, now, do a biceps curl towards your shoulder. Do it on the other hand.

Exercises for the lower extremities:

  • Sit up straight in your chair then place your right arm behind your right hip then twist to the right and hold that position. Repeat on your left.
  • Sit up straight with your stomach in. Then lift your left leg straight until it's level with your hips. Hold the position for 5 seconds then do it on the other leg.
  • With the same starting position, lift your left foot 3 inches off the ground then hold it for 5 seconds. Do the same with your right foot.
  • Put something hard (ex. a bottle) between knees while on the same starting position, then squezze it gently.
  • While sitting, lift your butt of the seat and hover over your chair for 2-3 seconds. Stand up then repeat it.
  • Sit on a stable chair and then place your hands next to your hips. Move your hips in front of the chair and bend your elbows. Lower your body until elbows are at 90 degrees, then repeat.
  • Stand up, make sure your stomach is in and your spine straight. Lift your leg forward up to where you're comfortable. It's best if you can lift it up to your hip level. Hold the position for 5 seconds.
  • Now do the same, but lift your leg sideward.
  • Sit on the edge of your chair, lift your arms parallel to the floor, then contract your abs while lowering your upper body. Hold the position for 5 seconds then repeat.
  • Cross arms on your chest, contract your abs, then curl your shoulders towards your hips. Make sure that you keep your stomach in. Hold for 5 second then repeat.

Office Ergonomics

  • It is suggested to have your computer monitor be positioned properly with its top at eye level.
  • Keyboard needs to be placed where your forearms, wrists, and hands are aligned and parallel to the floor. It is also important not to pound the keys. Practice touching the keys softly to prevent adding strains to your fingers. The mousepad can also be placed at a height that will have your arm, wrist and hand aligned.
  • The wrist should not rest on anything that will cause it to be bent down, up, or side, so that it can help your fingers move freely.
  • Your chair needs to be adjustable in a comfortable position where your thighs are parallel to the floor or the angle of your hips to your knees is slightly downward.

Other tips

  1. Instead of riding an elevator, it's a good exercise to take the stairs. This will burn your calories and is good to your heart.
  2. When parking your car, try to look for a few walk-spot so you can do some mini-walks on your way to the office.
  3. Wear comfortable shoes to prevent adding strains to your back and feet.
  4. Do some movements like shaking your hands, flexing your head from side to side, front and back.


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    • JKSophie profile image

      JKSophie 9 years ago from Philippines

      Yeah, I know how it feels. :-)

    • Ande Moore profile image

      Ande Moore 9 years ago from Austin, Texas

      Great tips! Thanks, sometimes I forget myself.