woman stretching at her desk

Stretches to Do at Work

Sit at a desk all day? Try these two stretches to relieve muscle tension and rejuvenate you during the work day

Your Wellness

Work can be a pain-literally. If you sit at a desk all day, you may suffer back and neck aches, muscle tension, fatigue, blood clots and more.

The two stretches below take only a few minutes, but help ease the burden on your body created by sitting for hours. They'll rejuvenate you during the work day and send you home ready for an active evening.

#1: Chest stretch

Why this exercise is helpful: When you sit at a computer all day, you often start to slouch, shoulders rounded forward. It's a good idea to relieve that strain by opening up the chest muscles several times throughout the day.

Where to do it: Sitting in a chair or standing.

How to do it:

  • Stand or sit with your body straight.
  • Put both arms out to the side (elbows slightly bent) with your palms facing forward.
  • Bring your arms back as far as you can go comfortably, while feeling the stretch in your chest.
  • Hold for 20 to 30 seconds.
  • Repeat 3 to 5 times.

#2: Neck and upper back stretch

Why this exercise is helpful: This stretch relaxes muscle tension in the neck and upper back. It also helps relieve workday stress.

Where to do it: Sitting in a chair.

How to do it:

  • Drop your chin down to your chest.
  • Place your hands on the back of your head.
  • Gently push down until you feel a comfortable slight stretch in your neck and some of your upper back.
  • Hold for 20 to 30 seconds, breathing slowly.
  • If you close your eyes while doing this stretch and concentrate on your breathing, this can be a great stress reliever.
  • Repeat 3 to 5 times.
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