Take A Break: 8 Desk Stretches For Your Workday

Staying static can be harmful to the body, but it is challenging for desk-bound public officers to find time to exercise and decompress.
8 stretches that can be done at your desk to help you stay energised at work.

We often hear the saying "no pain, no gain". But not all pain is necessary to achieve success. Many of us who have desk-bound jobs experience pain from remaining stationary for prolonged periods.

Challenge shares eight simple stretches to do at your desk to stay energised.

1. Shoulder Rolls

Most of us working at desk-bound jobs unconsciously slouch over our laptops as we work, which causes our shoulders to stiffen. Rolling your shoulders forward and backward can help you stop hunching and loosen up your shoulder muscles.

2. Over-The-Desk Stretch

over-the-desk stretch

If you need to "bow out" of work because you feel tense in your upper back, try the over-the-desk stretch. Just interlock your fingers and bend your upper body parallel to your desk for a few seconds, and you are good to go!

3. Head Tilts

Are you rushing a task and feeling stiff from looking at your computer screen? A head tilt is a quick and simple way to release the tension in your neck and shoulders, and it only takes less than a minute.

4. The Classic Spinal Twist

classical spinal twist

Alleviate your lower back aches by doing the classic spinal twist. Place both feet on the ground and twist your upper body in the opposite direction. As a bonus, you'll get a satisfying crack while doing it.

5. Palms Out

The aches you experience after long hours spent typing are a symptom of overworked hands. Keeping your palm out, fingers pointing down, and applying pressure to your hand can help improve blood circulation and stretch your wrist.

6. Hamstring Stretch

hamstring stretch

While you may think that you do not use your legs at your desk all day, the lack of flexibility can also lead to lower back pains. Straighten one leg, flex your foot, and slowly fold forward while keeping your back flat like a table. Hold the stretch for 10 seconds before switching legs.

7. Reach out for the Skies

Like the famous National Day Song, the "reach out for the skies" stretch can be done when you need to feel rejuvenated mid-work. This stretch improves blood circulation in your arms and decompresses your back.

8. Figure 4 Stretch

figure four stretch

You might have heard of a figure eight, but have you heard of a figure four? This stretch resembles the number four and helps relieve tension in your glutes and hips after a day of sitting.

Bonus: 3 Tips on Maintaining Good Posture

For public officers looking for more "preventive" measures to these pains, here are three quick tips to help you maintain a better sitting posture.

1. Roll your shoulders into your shoulder blades

Rolling your shoulders back into your shoulder blades can prevent slouching and hunching, eliminating the possible body aches you experience.

2. Keep your back against the chair's backrest

Keeping your back against the chair’s backrest ensures your back is well-supported as you work through your daily tasks. If you feel uncomfortable with your chair, consider investing in an ergonomic backrest that can provide additional support.

3. Keep your screen at eye level

Having your computer screen lower or higher than your eye level can result in muscle strains on your neck and shoulders. By placing your computer on a stand or adjusting your chair, you can also ensure your head is aligned with your spine.

    Mar 15, 2024
    Jayme Teo
    Constance Neo
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