It’s scary to think about how much time most of us spend at our desks these days. For many, it’s upwards of 40, 50 or 60 hours per week. That’s a whole lot of time and, as most of us have come to know, that’s a whole lot of stress on our bodies. For a lot of folks, this is particularly true for the lower back.
However, there are things we can do to reduce the strain on our bodies and make desk work a lot easier on our lower backs. Below are a few stretches that will make your back say, “thank you.”
Seated Forward Flexion Stretch
This first stretch can easily be done from your desk chair.
First, sit in your chair with your feet on the ground, approximately shoulder width apart. Bend forward over your legs, starting with a straight back, and then round your back over to rest on your legs. Let your arms hang down. This should provide a stretch (gentle for some, relatively intense for others) all the way down your spine.
Stretching the legs and hips can help relieve some pressure off of the back. You can also do this stretch from your desk chair.
Start by keeping one foot on the ground. Stretch the other leg straight out in front of you with your heel on the floor. That alone may be enough, but if you’re more flexible, you can hinge at the hips, leaning forward.
This next stretch will get you out of your chair and moving.
Lay down on your back and pull your knees up to your chest. Wrap your arms around your legs and breathe deeply, sinking more into the stretch with each exhale. You can even rock side to side to get a deeper stretch.
Supine Spinal Twist
Interested in another floor stretch? Well, this stretch is one of my favorites.
Lay on your back, pull your right knee up to your chest and leave the left leg lying long on the floor. Extend your right arm to your side and set it flat on the ground.
Next, slowly drop your right knee over your left side creating a twist at the spine. Your knee may or may not be able to reach the floor, but either way, you’ll be getting a great spiral stretch.
Once finished with the right side, switch to the left side.