If you’re reading this, you’re probably stuck at a desk job, probably typing away your time in front of the monitor, 9 to 5, five days a week. Sooner or later, the lethargy kicks in. You feel the stiffness of your neck, the dryness of your eyes and the stinging pain of carpal tunnel syndrome. Most of us have to stick it out till the end of the day.
So what do we do?
The answer is simple.
Take mini breaks and perform short 5 minute easy exercises at intervals throughout the day.
Anyway, below is a list of exercises that anyone can perform even if she’s wearing a pair of high heels or mini skirt. Choose 1 exercise for each category and exercise every 45 minutes.
- Close your face with hand. Open your eyes and look into the darkness for 10 seconds. Now close your eyes and lower your hands. Stay at this position for 10 seconds. Repeat it all over twice.
- Focus on a word from a document for 10 seconds.
- Move your eye in a clockwise or anti clockwise direction, imagine moving along the edges of a big clock (12 – 1- 2), while keeping your head still all the while. Change directions after 10 rounds.
Then focus at an object into the distance for another 10 seconds. Repeat twice.
- Tilt your right ear as if to touch your right shoulder. Feel the stretch on the left side of your neck. Change sides after 10 repetitions.
- Turn your head to look right and keep it there for 10 seconds. Change directions and keep it there for 10 seconds. Repeat twice.
- Rotate your head in a clockwise position for 10 rounds. Now move it anticlockwise for another 10 rounds. Repeat twice.
- Move your shoulders up towards your ears and sink your head as far as it may go. Hold for 10 seconds. Repeat twice.
- Hold a water bottle in your left hand, extending your left arm to the left while keeping the wrist facing up.
- Rotate your shoulders clockwise/anticlockwise 10 rounds. Change directions and do 10 more rounds. Repeat twice.
Push the water bottle up and slowly lower it to the original position. Repeat 10 times. Do the same for the left.
- Hold the water bottle in one hand.
- Hold the water bottle at the back of your head with your left hand.
- Move your right forearm clockwise or anticlockwise, as if spinning a wheel, for 10 rounds. Change directions and do 10 more rounds. Do the same for the left forearm.
- Stand up, make sure there is ample space in around you and swing your arms back and forth for 10 cycles. Rest awhile. Repeat twice.
Curl it for 10 times. Do the same for the other arm. Repeat twice.
Straighten your arms towards the top slowly. Do this for 10 reps and do the same for your right hand.
- Put your hands straight in front of you and pull your fingers back from the top with the other hand. Hold for 10 seconds.
- Put your hands straight out in front of you and rotate your wrists one direction for 10 rounds. Reverse your direction for another 10 rounds. Rest awhile. Repeat twice.
Now hold your fingers back from the bottom for another 10 seconds before changing hands.
- Stretch your fingers as far as they can go. Hold for 10 seconds.
- Push all fingers onto the table as hard as you can for 10 seconds. Rest and repeat again twice.
- Shake your hands vigorously in front of you, as if to get rid of a spider crawling on your hand, for 10 seconds. Rest awhile. Repeat twice.
- Put your hands straight out in front of you. Pull each finger back one by one, pausing for 2 seconds at each finger.
Then bend them at the knuckles and hold for 10 seconds. Repeat twice.
- Interlace your fingers behind your back. Then turn your elbows gently inward, while straightening your arms. Hold this position for 10 seconds. Repeat twice.
- Space out in front of you. Bend your head down to as far as you can go and try to hug your knees. Feel a mild tension at the back. Hold for 10 seconds. Slowly come back up. Repeat twice.
- Put your hands behind your lower back and push forward while bending your shoulders back to arch your spine. Hold for 10 seconds. Rest. Repeat twice.
- Sit in an upright position. Slowly lower your right hand till it touches the floor. Feel the tension at the waist. Feel it. Hold for 10 seconds. Change sides. Repeat twice.
- Hold on to the back of your chair with your left hand and turn your waist to as far right as you can go. Pull with your left hand to go further. Hold for 10 seconds and repeat the same for the other side. Do this twice.
- Put water bottle in between the knees. Squeeze and hold for 10 seconds. Repeat twice.
- Lift the left leg off the floor. Hold for 10 seconds. Do the same for the right. Repeat twice.
- Extend your left leg as straight as you can. Hold for 10 seconds. Do the same for your right. Repeat twice.
- Stand up.
- Walk up 1 floor worth of stairs. If your office is on the 31st floor, stop at the 30th floor in the mornings, after lunch, etc, and walk.
- Put your right feet on top of your left hip and push down your right knee to as far as you can go. Hold for 10 seconds. Change positions. Repeat twice.
Slowly move your butt down, hovering just above the seat almost touching it, and then stand up again. Repeat 10 times.
- Push up your feet from the tip of your toes and hold for 10 seconds. Rest awhile. Repeat twice.
- Try to kick your butt from the back with one leg for 10 times. Do the same for the other leg. Repeat twice.
Personally, I use an open source free software called Workrave, an excellent program that reminds me to take micro breaks and short breaks at intervals throughout the day. Download Workrave and mix up some of the exercises with the ones listed here.
Do share your suggestions and ideas in the comments below.