Glazed eyes? Tense muscles? Feel like you’ve been at your desk for days? Though we feel – and perform – better when we exercise, finding time to squeeze exercise into our busy workdays isn’t always easy.
This quick workout is designed to clear the mind and stretch the body. All you need is five minutes and a chair.
If you feel pain or discomfort while attempting these movements, stop immediately.
- Sit with your back straight, both feet on the floor and hands at your side.
- Close your eyes. Take a deep breath through your nose. Exhale. Repeat.
- Lift your shoulders toward the ceiling (shrugging). Count to five, release and repeat.
- Sit straight in your chair, leaving a bit of space between your back and the chair. Squeeze your shoulder blades together. Count to five, release and repeat.
- To protect your neck muscles, slightly raise your shoulders. Gently tilt your head to the right until your ear almost touches your shoulder. Count to five, release and repeat with the left side. Next, tilt your head back slowly so that your nose is pointing toward the ceiling. Hold and release. Tilt your head to your chest. Hold and release.
- Lift your arms until they're level with your shoulders. Using your left hand, grasp your right arm above the elbow. Gently pull it toward your left shoulder. Hold, release and repeat with your left arm.
- Link your fingers and stretch your arms in front of you at shoulder level. Turn your palms out, extending your wrists and shoulder blades. Hold, release and repeat with arms over your head, palms toward the ceiling.
- Cross your right leg and rest your ankle on your left knee. Grasp your ankle and rotate it clockwise then counterclockwise about 15 times each way. Repeat on your left ankle.
- Sit up in your chair. Lean forward as far as possible, resting your hands on the floor to stretch your lower back. Hold. As you sit back up, place your hands on your thighs for assistance.