6 Exercises to Do at Work for Staying Loose
While modern technology has made a world of difference in our lives in terms of benefits and convenience, it also comes with its own downsides, as well. As more people are working from desks than ever before, we’re unwittingly losing out on a lot of potential movement and activity that is vital to our overall health.
To combat this decline into a more sedentary lifestyle and potentially avoid some of the health complications that can come from sitting too long, we’re taking a look at 6 exercises to do at work for staying loose. We’ll give you loads of options you can do whether you’re working out of a home office setup or at the company office. Read on and stay healthy!
The Importance of Active Breaks and Exercise at Work
While we know you likely don’t have the option to get a full gym-style workout while on a break, it is important to make sure you’re finding opportunities throughout your day to be active. Taking active breaks at work can help prevent pain from sitting too long, may help improve productivity, boosts your ability to concentrate, and can even help with how to de-stress.
The fact is our bodies need movement to stay healthy. Taking a break to exercise at work is a simple method that can have a huge impact on both your mental and physical well being. An active break should be at least around 10 minutes long and happen every two hours of work time.
Bonus Tip: In addition to doing exercise at work, make sure you’re supporting your health with an ergonomic chair and workspace setup.
Choosing an Easy Exercise to Do at Work
Choosing an easy exercise to do at work is much simpler than you may think. You don’t need gym equipment or have to go for a run in order to stay healthy (although if you’re working from home, a quick run is a great option). Instead, look at what you have available around you and that’s likely all you need!
While doing exercises at work is important regardless, studies have also shown that choosing exercises to do at work with a coworker may be more effective than solo fitness routines. So grab a friend and boost your work exercises together!
Ideas for Exercise at Work While Standing
We’re kicking off our list with some simple ideas for exercises to do at work while standing. If you’re sitting for long periods of time, it’s good to get up and move around some to get the blood flowing better. A few standing exercises to do at work are:
- Calf Raises
- Desk push-ups
First up on our list of easy exercises to do at work while standing are lunges. Lunges help work your quads, hamstrings, and calf muscles. They also contribute to building up your core muscles, which are important for improving posture and avoiding bad sitting habits that are common causes of back pain.
Simple lunges follow these steps:
- Stand tall, maintaining good posture while placing your hands on your hips
- Take a big step forward bending your front knee to a 90-degree angle
- Lift up from your front lunging leg to return to your starting position
- Repeat this action 10 to 20 times, alternating legs
Calf raises are another easy exercise to do at work while standing for an active break. This activity may be the easiest exercise at work on our list but they’ll keep your calves strong and may help prevent leg cramps from stiffness!
To do standing calf raises, follow these easy steps:
- Standing straight up with your feet flatly on the floor
- Raise your heels a few inches off the ground
- Hold this position for several seconds, then slowly lower yourself back down
- Repeat at least 10 or 20 times each break
Finding an exercise to do at work while standing isn’t limited to working out your legs. If you have a sturdy desk that will support your weight and pressure against it, you might try desk push-ups during an active break. These can help tone your deltoids and triceps without you having to get on the dirty floor!.
For desk push-ups, follow these steps:
- Place your hands on the edge of your desk, shoulder width apart from each other
- Stretch your legs out behind you so that you’re standing in a leaning position
- Lower your chest to your desk then push back up to the starting position
- Repeat this exercise 10 to 20 times per break
Easy Chair Exercises at Work
If you’re at the office or working from your home office setup, one of the easiest tools to use is a chair. There are a number of full body workout exercises you can do whether you’re in a simple office chair or zero gravity chair. Be sure whichever chair you’re using is sturdy enough for exercises to do at work so you don’t accidentally injure yourself while trying to stay healthy!
Three of our favorite chair exercises at work include:
- Tricep dips
- Chair squats
- Oblique Twists
First up in our list of simple exercises to do at work to stay loose are tricep dips. These chair exercises at work are simple to do and can be done right at your desk. It’s important to remember not to use a chair with wheels, though! One option for those working from home is incorporating a zero gravity chair into your home office setup and using it for these exercises.
The steps for this exercise are:
- Sit on the edge of your chair
- Extend your legs, keeping your feet about hip-width apart and your heels on the ground
- Grip the seat next to your hips with fingers facing forward and palms flat
- Holding the edge of the chair, slide your body forward until you’re clear of the seat
- Lower your body until your upper arms are parallel to the ground
- Return to your starting position and repeat (we recommend 10 times)
Squats are another type of chair exercises at work that you can easily do from your office. Squats keep your glutes, hamstrings, and leg muscles loose to avoid pain from sitting too long. They also help keep blood circulating well throughout your lower extremities.
To do squats using your office chair follow these steps:
- Stand with your office chair behind you, keeping your feet shoulder width apart
- Extend your arms out in front of you
- Keeping your toes in line with your knees, lower your buttocks until you’re just above the seat
- Return to the starting position and repeat this exercise (for 10 reps)
Oblique twists are easy ways to exercise at work whether you’ve got a regular office chair, a swivel chair, or even if you’re using a zero gravity chair at home. These chair exercises at work focus on your core and obliques. You may not be able to touch elbow to knee at first, but over time it can also help increase mobility and flexibility.
Check out these easy steps for oblique twists:
- Sit in your chair with your feet flat on the floor
- Place your hands behind your head, interlocking your fingers
- Lift one knee toward the opposite elbow, twisting your body down toward it
- Return to your starting position, ensuring you’re maintaining good posture each time
- Repeat this motion for 10 reps on each side
As you can see, there are a number of exercises to do at work for staying loose and keeping your muscles strong. Finding ways to be active throughout your day is especially important for those working office jobs (at home or on site). You don’t need a full gym of equipment to maintain a full body exercise routine! You can use your desk, grab an office chair, or even choose a zero gravity chair for your home office setup to supplement your activities. Once you make active breaks a habit, we’re sure you’ll feel the difference they make.
Curious about more ways to use a zero gravity chair and the benefits they provide? Check out these guides to learn more: