Unique Ideas for Stress Management in the Office

5 Min Read
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Millions of Americans who suffer from back and neck pain are unable to identify a specific incident as the root of their discomfort.

Surprisingly, it doesn’t take bungee jumping or moving a piano to bring on a backache. In fact, one of the most common causes of back and neck problems is simply doing too much of nothing at all.

Sedentary jobs that necessitate sitting at a desk or computer terminal for extended lengths of time can be hard on your body. Maintaining the same position for hours on end may result in continuous muscle tension, joint strains, long-lasting muscle shortening, reduced circulation as well as other damaging conditions which contribute to back as well as neck pain.

Are those of us who make a living glued to an office chair hour after hour, day after day, destined for bad backs? Absolutely not. You can counteract the negative effects of prolonged sitting by breaking up your day with brief, frequent periods of activity.

Perform the following five-minute series of stretches twice a day and supplement this quick routine with hourly strolls around the office. Stretching, coupled with a minute or two of upright movement each hour, helps reduce stress, ease muscle tension and strain, improve circulation and relieve pain.

If you’re experiencing severe or persistent pain, consult a doctor.

1. Reaching behind your back

Reaching behind your back, clasp your fingers together with your palms facing in. Slowly raise and straighten your arms. Hold this position for several seconds, then slowly release. Repeat three times.

2. Raise your elbows

Raise your elbows while keeping your hips stationary. Twist your upper body at your waist to the right. Hold this position for several seconds, and then repeat on your left side. Repeat this stretch on each side three times.

3. Place your fingers behind your head

Squeeze your shoulder blades together till you feel tension through your upper back, and then gradually release. Replicate about three times.

4. Stretch your right arm through your upper body

With your left arm, pull your right elbow toward your left shoulder. Hold this position for several seconds, and then reverse arms. Repeat three times.

5. Clasp both your hands together above your head

While stretching your hands upward, slowly lean to the right side, then left. Do not arch your back. Keep your knees slightly bent. Repeat three times.

6. Lean against a support

Lean against a support with your left leg forward and your right leg back. Your left leg should be bent and your right leg should be straight. With your right heel on the floor, slowly move your hips forward until you feel a stretch in your right calf. Hold for 30 seconds before releasing, and then reverse legs. Repeat three times.

7. Extend and separate your fingers

Extend and separate your fingers until you feel the stretch. Hold this position for five seconds. Relax, and then gently bend your fingers.

8. Bring your left hand to your upper back

Bring your left hand to your upper back from above while bringing your right hand to your upper back from below. Slowly move your hands as close together as possible and hold. Release after several seconds, then reverse arms. Repeat three times.

9. Tuck in your chin slowly.

Hold this position for two seconds, then release. This exercise counteracts the effects of leaning forward to stare at a computer monitor.

10. Sit up straight

Sit up straight and extend both of your legs out from your body. Hold this position for several seconds, then release. Repeat three times

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