Office workers: This one is for you!
Sitting in a chair for long periods of time can cause the following:
- Slumped posture
- Tight shoulders and neck
- Tight hips
- Weak, inactive glutes
- Weak abdominals
AND ULTIMATELY CAUSE POOR POSTURE!
Ever thought of trying Pilates?
Pilates is comprised of two components; stretching and strengthening (hence why I chose the name Duo Pilates!) It is a perfect form of exercise for correcting poor posture.
If you have slumped shoulders, Pilates will:
- Stretch your chest, and neck muscles
- Strengthen your back and shoulders
If you have an excessive curve through your lower back and subsequent back pain, Pilates will:
- Stretch out your lower back and hips
- Strengthen your glutes and abdominal muscles
If this sounds like you, I would highly recommend adding regular Pilates classes to your routine! Aim to attend 2-3 per week for at least 10-15 weeks and see if your posture improves. I can guarantee you, it won’t be a waste of your time and you will start to find long days at your desk much more bearable!
To counterbalance the toll that office work can take on your body, it is important to be conscious of your posture while you are sitting at your chair. Below, I have provided you with 3 stretches/strength exercises that you can do without leaving your desk. These 3 exercises are designed to correct your slumped desk posture and strengthen your shoulders. I would aim to perform these 3 exercises at least 2-3 times/day. It will only take 5 minutes! Before I take you through these 3 simple exercises, I have outlined some simple ways that you can improve your desk space.
7 simple ways that you can improve your desk space
- Sit back and keep your ears in line with your shoulders
- Uncross your legs
- Pull your shoulder blades back
- Try using a lumbar (lower back) support
- Get up every so often and walk around
- Bring your keyboard closer to you so that you don’t slump forward to reach it
- Place a reminder on your desk to sit up straight and stretch every so often
3 simple exercises that you can do from your desk
1. NECK STRETCH
HOW TO: Place one hand underneath your leg and gently tilt your head to the other side.
2. ARM CIRCLES
HOW TO: Hold onto your resistance band, keep your shoulders back and down and circle your arms back behind you. Note: if you have a shoulder injury, skip out on this stretch!
3. EXTERNAL ROTATION
HOW TO: Keep your elbows in by your side, imagining they are superglued to your top. Hold onto your band with your palms facing up and then proceed to press your forearms out. Your wrists should stay in line with your elbows the whole time. Stay open through your chest and visualise pinching your shoulder blades together as you press your arms out. Slowly return your forearms back in and repeat!
As well as performing these 3 exercises, I recommend trying regular Pilates to strengthen your glutes & abdominals as well as stretch out your back and hip flexors. It is one thing to continually remind yourself to sit up straight and it is another to strengthen/stretch these muscles so that they can withstand long periods of time sitting in a chair.
Try and find a studio in your local area or if you are close to Morningside, click here to enquire about attending classes at Duo Pilates.
Click the link below to find out more about THE DUO PILATES METHOD. A 12 Week online Stretch & Strengthen Pilates workout program that you can do from home!