Unless you work in a trade job or in the fitness industry, chances are you spend most of your time at work sitting on your desk in front of a screen. Admittedly this is unavoidable, even more so that most of us are working from home now and spending even less time moving.
One of the main problems with working from home, we are spending even more time being sedentary without the daily commute, and most of us don’t practice proper sitting postures and worse, don’t take the time to move around or stretch after being inactive for long periods of time. Excessive sitting, typing, phone usage, and screen staring can cause a multitude of problems with regards to your posture and how the human body is meant to function.
Luckily for you, we’ve got some tips to help with your posture and get you moving even if your work is mostly sedentary in nature.
Sitting – The Silent Killer
Let’s address the main position most of us work in - sitting. Though this might seem simple enough, proper posture ensures that there is reduced stress on your spine, your core is engaged, shoulder blades retracted, and neck not extended.
1. Don’t slouch!
Being in a slouched position for extended periods of time causes your muscles to become ‘lazy’. Instead, when sitting, imagine being pulled up by an invisible string attached to your head. This will pull your spine and core into a better position rather than being slumped over. Also when typing, make it a habit to keep your shoulder blades retracted and down. Having your shoulders rolled forward causes your neck to extend. Over a period of time, this causes muscle tightness and imbalances that could lead to further problems in your neck and in some cases migraines.
2. If space allows, consider swapping your swivel chair with a Swiss Ball/exercise ball.
Sitting on a Swiss Ball ensures that your core muscles are constantly engaged to prevent you from falling off. Naturally this would translate into better posture, balance and stability.
Let’s get moving!
Now that we’ve got the main issue out of the way, let’s look at ways to get you moving and waking up those ‘lazy’ muscles.
3. Use a smaller water bottle or cup
Instead of a giant water bottle, use a smaller bottle or cup to ensure that you have to get up regularly for refills. This ensures your muscles are used and you get a chance to get blood circulating through your body (every step counts). Staying hydrated would also mean you’d be making more trips to the toilet. Don’t underestimate how much of a difference these small steps make.
4. Stepping out for lunch
With all the technology we have at our fingertips, even the most primal of activities such as searching and obtaining food, is simplified and easily accessible. Food delivery services are prevalent and so easy to use that we no longer have the need to step out for a meal. Use your lunch break wisely, which means taking a walk out to buy food or even moving to prepare a meal. Doing these simple things will awaken your muscles from the monotony of sitting down. Even the simple act of taking a walk and getting some fresh air in the morning can help simulate the daily commute.
5. Work on those forearms
Having a simple stress ball at your desk will allow you to do this. Every hour, take two minutes off to squeeze the stress ball as hard as you can for a set number of repetitions. This will ensure that all the muscles in your forearms are used, and not only those associated with typing.
Being mindful, and following these simple steps will ensure that you develop a better posture and keep chronic aches and pains at bay. Also, making these small changes to your lifestyle will also lead you to walk a lot more in your day.
If you can take away anything from this, here are the two things: Don’t slouch, and move more!
Keen to get more active? Speak to us to get your free health consultation and we can discuss a program that suits you.