Too many of us are spending our hours and lives sitting in front of a laptop day in and day out, and while remembering to get up and walk the dog, get our lunch, or just take a break for a stroll helps, there’s a good chance your back, knees, neck, and other muscles are begging for more.
If you find yourself flinching and groaning every time you stand up from your desk, here are 10 stretches you can try.
10. Butterfly Stretch
To counteract stiffness in your inner thigh muscles, sit tall and bring the soles of your feet together, then bring them as close to your body as feels comfortable.
Your knees will drop a bit toward the ground as you keep your chest tall, hinge forward at the hops, and lean forward.
9. Long Lunge
To get your hip flexors some action, sink into a lunge and let your back knee drop to the ground as you squeeze your glut and lean forward.
You can drop to your fingertips or forearms if it feels good, then switch sides.
8. Frog Sits
This will open your hips and making standing and moving around feel freer.
You sink onto all fours with your knees under your hips and your hands under your shoulders, then spread your knees apart while keeping your feet in line.
Keep your chest tall, gently rock back on your hips, then forward, and do about 15-20 pulses.
7. Hip 90/90
This will care for your hips and open your chest – sit on your butt with bent knees, plant your heels as far apart as you can.
Your fingertips go behind your hips and your chest should be tall.
Tilt your left knee toward the ground on your left side, following it with the right knee.
Plant your heels to reverse the movement.
6. Lunge with Side Reach
If your rib cage is feeling stiff, improve your mobility and comfort by sinking into a lunge and keeping your hips square as you reach your left arm up over your head and toward your right side.
Repeat some reps on both sides.
5. Four Figure Stretch
Lie on your back and cross your left ankle over your right knee, then hug your right thigh to your chest and thread your hands through, bringing your right leg closer.
Make sure to switch sides!
4. Cat Cows
This will reset your breathing and your spine as you start on all fours with your hands and knees under your shoulders and hips.
Inhale as you arch your back and then bring your belly toward the floor, tipping your chin up toward the ceiling.
Push your shoulders away from your ears and exhale as you reverse the wave, arching your back toward the ceiling like a cat.
3. Chest Reach
To open your chest back up after a day of slouching, stand tall with bent elbows, then reach your arms up and back until you look like a W.
Bring your elbows toward each other behind you, and while keeping the tension, unbend your elbows and extend your fingers up toward the ceiling.
2. World’s Greatest Stretch
Start with a lunge, placing both hands on the ground around your front foot.
Bend your right arm and reach your forearm toward the ground while keeping your left hand planted.
Then unwind your right arm and reach it up and over, twisting so it’s reaching toward the left side of the ceiling.
Then, bring your right hand back next to your foot.
Balance, then lean back on your hips and straighten your front leg to stretch your hamstring.
1. Scorpion Stretch
Lie on your stomach with your hands under your shoulders.
Extend your right arm straight out next to you while keeping your palm on the floor, then press the ground away with your left hand as you bend your left leg and reach it up and over your body.
I don’t know about you, but I’m going to give these a shot today!
How do you keep your body from locking up after a long day at your desk? Share your tips in the comments!