Incorporating stretches into your morning and evening routine can help to relieve muscle tension, improve flexibility and remedy any aches in your body.
With more of us working from home, being sat in a bent position over a laptop or at a desk for a long period of time can result in lower back soreness, neck pain and stiffness.
To help ease any discomfort, the team at Flexology Studio have shared their top stretches which can be practiced in the comfort of your own home. They are suitable for all but remember to only do what you can and take it easy if you’ve never done them before.
If you are worried about muscle pain or stretching, speak to your GP.
“These are some simple stretches to do at home when working from your home-office or after a run or home workout. You will need a chair and a blank wall space to do these stretches,” the team at Flexology says.
1. Upper back stretch
Need to stretch out your back? Sitting still for a long period of time — such as at a desk — can often result in an aching back. Follow these simple stretches to help ease any pain:
1. Sit on a chair and stretch both arms out in front of your body, interlacing your fingers with your knuckles facing away.
2. Gently press away from you so you feel your shoulder blades parting.
3. Relax your head forward. Hold for 15 to 30 seconds.
2. Wrist/forearm stretch
A great stretch for those typing all day, this can easily be done on a lunch or tea break. All you need to do is:
1. Take your right arm out in front of you with your fingers facing up and your palm facing away from you.
2. Using the other hand, apply pressure to the palm/base of your fingers so that you are pulling them towards you, feeling a gentle stretch under the wrist.
3. Hold for 10 to 20 seconds then bring the fingers down towards the floor and apply pressure to the back of the hand, bringing the fingers towards the underneath of your arm and stretching the top of the forearm and wrist.
4. Hold for 10 to 20 seconds. Roll the wrist out. Repeat on the other side.
3. Ankle/calf stretch
1. Place your hands on a wall and bring the toes of your left foot up to the wall and your right foot behind you with your leg straight so you are in a short lunge.
2. Touch your left knee to the wall. If this is easy then move your left foot slightly further away from the wall until you can only just touch the knee. You should feel the stretch in your right calf and the front on the ankles.
3. Hold for 20 to 30 seconds and then repeat on the other side.
4. Adductor stretch (inner thigh)
1. Lie on your back with your legs up a wall and your bottom as close to the wall as possible.
2. Gently allow your legs to drop out sideways against the wall, you will feel the stretch on the inside of your legs.
3. Take 5 to 10 deep breaths and allow yourself to gradually go deeper into the stretch. When you come out use your hands to gently close your legs.
5. Hip flexor stretch
This simple stretch is great if you find your hips aching. It can be done anywhere in your home.
1. Take a low lunge with your left leg forward and your right knee on the floor.
2. Keeping your left knee no further forward than your ankle, shift your right knee back until you can feel the stretch in your right hip flexor, take your hands onto your knee and allow yourself to sink deeper into the stretch.
3. Hold for 30 seconds then repeat on the other side.
6. Scalene (neck) stretch
Whether you’re hunched over a laptop or are looking down at work, doing so can often cause aches and pain in our neck. A great way to ease this feeling is to get into the habit of stretching regularly. In order to do this stretch you will need a chair.
1. Sit up straight and take your left arm over your head so that your palm is on the opposite side of your face.
2. Keeping your right shoulder down, very gently pull your head so that your left ear is moving towards your left shoulder.
3. The neck is sensitive so keep it gentle and don’t push too far. Take five deep breaths and then release the hand and slowly bring your head back to centre. Repeat on the other side.
7. Chest opener/pec stretch
In order to do this stretch, you will need to stand near a sturdy wall.
1. Using the corner of a wall or a door frame, place your hand flat on the inside and extend your arm.
2. Turn your body away from the outstretched arm so that you feel a stretch across the pec muscles.
3. Try adjusting the arm higher or lower to target different areas of the pec, higher will target the upper pec, lower will target the lower pec.
8. Glute/piriformis stretch
The piriformis muscle, which is located beneath the gluteal (bottom) muscles, plays an incredibly important part in your hip flexibility. If you feel you need to stretch it out, this simple technique may be able to help. This one can be done on a chair or lying on the floor depending on flexibility.
1. Sit on a chair and place your right ankle on your left thigh, just above your knee.
2. Place your hands on your shins and, keeping your spine straight, start to lean forward to deepen the stretch.
3. If you prefer to take this on the floor then lie on your back and place the right ankle on your left thigh, just above the knee, reach through to hold the back of your left thigh and pull the knee and leg towards you.
4. Try to keep your back flat on the ground and your feet flexed. Hold whichever version you take for 20 to 30 seconds then change to the other leg.
9. QL/side stretch
1. Sit upright in a chair with your feet shoulder distance apart.
2. Reach down with your right arm in between your legs leaning slightly forward.
3. Reach overhead with your left arm and lean to the right side feeling the stretch in your lower back and left side of the body. Hold for 30 seconds and then repeat on the other side.
Like this article? Sign up to our newsletter to get more articles like this delivered straight to your inbox.
This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at piano.io