Even if you workout frequently, spending the rest of your time sitting can have negative consequences for your health. Researches call this the trend of “exercising couch potatoes,” but desk jobs are a major cause of days spent sitting. Any amount of exercise that you can squeeze into your day is beneficial, so here to help are five exercises that you can do at your desk, no additional equipment needed.
1. Leg Lifts
Sit up strait in your seat, so that your back isn’t supported by the chair. Plant both feet firmly on the ground. Lift one foot up strait in front of you, and hold for eight seconds, then let the leg swing down for a moment without touching the floor and hold it back up for another eight counts. Do three or four reps and switch legs.
2. Arm Lifts
Lift your arms straight above your head, so that your hands are slightly wider than the shoulders. Pump your elbows down to the body and back up quickly for 30 seconds. Repeat two or three times.
3. Chair Crunch
Sit towards the edge of your seat and grip the armrests for stability. Lean back slightly, but don’t let your back be supported by the chair. Pull your knees up to chest level, straighten your legs for a moment, and then bend the knees again. Bend and straighten for five reps, and do at three sets of reps.
4. Reverse Plank
We don’t recommend trying this in a chair that will roll. Sit near the edge of your chair, grasp the sides of seat with both hands, and straighten legs in front of you, feet together and flat on floor. Straighten your arms and lift your hips until body forms a line from head to toe. Hold this position for three counts, lower and repeat. Try to aim for 10 to 15 reps.
5. Chair Twists
If you have a swivel chair, sit with your arms straight out to the sides, and you back straight. Twist your lower body (and chair) from the core from the left to the right. Stay in motion for 30 seconds, repeat twice.
Obviously, you’ll get your heart-rate up faster if you’re standing. Try 60 seconds of jumping jacks or running in place to add a little more heat to your break.
November 9th, 2010