Do you have sore muscles from sitting at a desk all day?

You’re not alone. According to a study, people are spending about 9 hours per day seated at a desk. Long hours in the office can lead to a slew of aches and pains created by bad posture and an unnatural position. 

While it’s best to have an ergonomic office set-up to ensure your body is in the best alignment possible, you also need to stretch regularly to get the blood flowing and give those muscles a break. 

Read on for 5 great desk stretches you can do without ever having to get up.

Spinal Twist

Gently wringing out your spine can release the build-up of tension that occurs after sitting for a while.

While seated in your desk chair with your feet on the ground, turn your upper body to the right, placing your hands on the back of your chair. While you turn your upper body, be sure to keep your lower half facing forward. 

Gently put pressure on your hands, moving your chest even further to the right and wringing out your spine. Don’t overextend. This should feel good, not painful. 

After you’ve held the stretch for a few seconds and taken some deep breaths, release your hands and slowly move your upper body back toward the front.

Repeat the stretch to the left side. 

Forward Fold

Many people don’t know that tightening in the hamstrings can actually lead to lower back pain; it’s all connected!

From your seated position at your desk, simply stand up, making sure there’s enough room between you and the desk in order for you to fold forward. 

Gently fold from the hips and let your head hang, receiving a stretch to the hamstrings. If it’s too much of a stretch, don’t go as far over and bend your knees. 

Take a few breaths and hold the stretch for about 15 seconds. 

Figure Four

This is a great hip opener that will also help the lower back. 

From your seated position with both feet flat on the floor and your knees bent, take your right leg and place your right ankle on top of your left thigh, just above the knee. If your left leg were straight, the shape would look like the number four.

This in itself may be enough of a stretch for the hips and outer thigh. If you need more, you can gently bend from the hips to bring your chest toward your thighs.

Repeat with the left leg.  

Chest Expander

If you spend most of the day hunched over your computer, this will feel great. 

You can do this one standing or seated. Clasp your hands behind you, gently straighten them and raise them up and back as far as you comfortably can. 

Take a few deep breaths, keeping your neck and back as straight as possible. You should feel your chest expand and your upper back and shoulders receive a nice stretch. 

Neck Roll

This stretch will help relieve the tight muscles in the neck and upper back. 

While seated in your chair with your feet on the floor, gently bring your chin to your chest, moving it slowly to the right so your right ear is trying to meet your right shoulder. 

Repeat this motion working your way back to the center and then to the left. 

Try These Desk Stretches Today! 

With these 5 helpful desk stretches above, you can relax your way toward reduced neck and back pain. 

Try setting an alarm to do these stretches at least a few times throughout the day so you can really get a break and start to feel the benefits. 

Another option is to get out of the office and schedule a stretch therapy session. Check out the rest of our site for more information about our stretch therapy services and ways we can help.