Did you know that if you sit on your couch or in an office chair for more than six hours every day, your risk of heart disease is 64% higher than for those who walk around during the day? You’re also losing seven years of quality life, and you’re more likely to get some types of cancer.
These days, a large percentage of the workforce are spending every day sitting at their office desks. And it turns out that in order to avoid an early death, we would need to exercise for an hour every single day (not many people have time for that).
Furniture at Work has kickstarted a social media campaign to draw attention to the perils of sitting down all day, and to teach people how to combat the effect on our joints and muscles.
Many people will notice that they have sore necks and backs, weak core muscles and shoulder tension after sitting all day, and this is cumulative, meaning years of sitting down all day can cause some serious health problems. 25% of people who have back pain actually have herniated disks- a serious problem which is sometimes caused by poor posture.
The answer? Office yoga. There’s a reason why yoga has been going strong for more than 5000 years, and people from all over the world use it as a great way to increase flexibility and strength. There are some excellent yoga-based stretches that you can do while sitting at your desk which will allow you to stay limber and reduce pain.
One good option is the Chair Raised Hands stretch, which is great for improving your posture, opening shoulders and strengthening your core. Simply sit on your chair as you would while at your desk, and make sure that your feet are flat on the floor.
Inhale, while raising your arms up toward the ceiling, and while your arms are in the air, hold this position while breathing slowly and then as you exhale, sweep your arms out to your sides.
The Chair Eagle Pose is another great stretch, which helps to loosen up stiff shoulders and wrists, and also releases any tightness that’s lingering between your shoulder blades and across your sacrum. Your legs will also be strengthened too.
While sitting at your desk and facing forward, cross your legs, resting your left thigh on your right thigh. The goal is to wrap your left foot as far as possible around your right calf. Bend your elbows and bring your palms forward until they’re touching, and then lift your elbows as you relax your shoulders and drop them away from your ears. Hold this position for three to five breaths and then repeat on the other side.
These are just two of the five great stretches on the recently released infographic, so be sure to check it out to find some other great ways to improve your health while at work.
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