21st March 2019Category: Working Carers
Unfortunately most people today when they are working are tied to their desk, which means reduced physical activity. On average we spend around 9.5 hours a day sitting and this means we have a sedentary lifestyle. This lifestyle increases our risk of heart disease, obesity and diabetes. According to the World Health Organisation, an estimated 3.2 million deaths can be attributed to lack of physical activity. However there is a way to fight back - small bouts of physical activity during the day.
The twinkle toes
Tap your toes speedily on the floor under your desk when sitting in your chair. Put on some music and do a little dance with your feet like Fred Astaire and no one will even know. Do this exercise throughout the day to get the blood flowing to your feet. Remember point your toes!
Jog on the spot
This exercise creates a one-minute burst of activity in-between your tasks. Very simple instructions; stand up and jog on the spot for a minute. To make it more intense; lift your knees higher.
The wall seat
Standing with your back against the wall, bend your knees and slide your back down the wall until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Hold this sitting situation for 30-60 seconds (over time this will get easier and you will be able to hold it for longer).
The waiting game
When you are waiting for the kettle to boil or you are at the photocopier, try this exercise to get those calf muscles working. Stand up straight with your feet shoulder-width apart. Then you will go up onto your tippy toes and pause at the top, then lower back down. To make it more interesting you can try to hold your position for an extra few seconds when you are paused at the top or try raising only one leg at a time.
Handshake with yourself
An odd name for an exercise but this will make sense. This exercise will be working your biceps. Sit on your chair with your feet on the floor. Clasp your hands together like you are giving yourself a handshake (one thumb pointing to the ceiling and the other at the floor). Then you will pull (try to limit the movement of your arms). Hold this position for 10 seconds, release and repeat 5 times.
Sit in your chair and cross your legs with your feet on the floor. Next thing to do is place your hands on the armrests. Then lift yourself a few inches from your seat. Hold this position for 10-20 seconds. Relax and return to a normal seated position for a rest for one minute, then repeat. Do this exercise 3 times in a row. This exercise will work your core. Want to make it more difficult? Try this exercise in a swivel chair.
A very simple exercise you can do in your chair. Raise both shoulders up towards your ears and hold for 5 seconds. Then relax. Repeat this exercise for 20 reps.
This exercise is for the people who have swivel chair in their office. Sit upright in your chair with your feet just above the floor (not touching the ground). Then your fingers need to hold the edge of your desk. Use the power of your core to turn the chair from side to side. Repeat 20 times.
This is an exercise no one will know is happening as you walk past. Take a deep breath and tighten your abdominal muscles. Ensure that you stay squeezed for 10 seconds and release. Repeat 10 times. This is a great one to add into your routine everyday.
Give these exercises a go and fingers crossed you enjoy! If you feel like you want to try out more exercises at your desk, there are more available on the NHS website click here