We’ve all heard the reports that desk jobs can wreak havoc on our bodies. With the majority of us working
at jobs that are either sedentary or require only light activity, the neck strains, lower back pain, poor posture and shoulder pains are an unfortunate reality for a lot of us. So what can we do to prevent desk job aches and pains without switching jobs?
For starters, take a look at your surroundings. What is the position of your computer screen? Ideally, you shouldn’t have to bend your neck to look at your screen. The same goes for phone screens. Lessen the amount of time your head is bent down while you’re texting, or otherwise looking at your phone. For every degree that your neck is bent forward, a surprising amount of weight is added onto your neck. Make sure you’ve set your chair at the right height so your elbows are at a 90 degree angle when typing. And if you’re having some wrist tenderness, cushions for your keyboard may be a good idea. If you’ve done all this, but you still experience pain from the day-to-day strains and stresses sitting at a desk can have on your body, you might be wondering, what else can you do?
Take Frequent Breaks – If you’re sitting at a desk for 8 -9 hours per day, taking breaks is important. Get up and take a lap around the office. If you can, schedule a good walk at your lunch hour. You’ll return to your desk refreshed and will be more productive.
Drink lots of water. We know it’s important, but not everyone is a fan of water. So make it a bit tastier Add some lemon and cucumber slices. Or some mint. And drink from a straw. You’ll end up taking larger gulps and drink more.
Watch what you eat. The last thing you want to do when you’re at a desk for the majority of your workday is to eat foods that are going to make you even more sluggish. Try to avoid heavy, large meals. Healthy snacks throughout the day are a good idea as well. A few local companies that prepare healthy lunches in our area are:
www.gourmettakeaway.ca (they deliver!)
Workout at your desk. You’re not going to burn major calories at your desk, but something is better than nothing. Some simple exercises are:
• Clenches. Simply clench your buttocks and hold for 10 seconds doing 5 sets or 8 reps.
• Ankle Rotations – rotate your ankles in both directions for 5 seconds. This exercise can strengthen the flexibility of your ankles and make you less likely to suffer from sprains.
• Arm Stretches. Stretch the muscles in your right arm by reaching as far to the left as you can with your right arm while supporting it in the crook of your left elbow and then hold it there. Feel the stretch for five seconds. Do eight reps before switching over to your left arm.
• Rotate at the Waist – Strengthen your core by rotating at the waist while remaining seated. Rotate to the left and hold for five seconds, then repeat on the right. Complete five sets. Grab the backrest of your chair with your hands for extra support.
Take up some active hobbies. Many of us aren’t fans of exercise, but if you find an activity that you enjoy, the exercise you’re getting won’t even be on your radar. Living in this beautiful city, a walk along one of the many trails or on the beach promenade is a great way to get your body moving. For a list of trails you may enjoy discovering visit:
And for some other ideas check out:
Keep up with regular visits to your massage therapist. This can be a big help to heal the aches and pains you are experiencing. Whether your massage therapist is breaking up and lengthening the knotted muscles in your neck and shoulders, working the strains out of your hands and wrists, or relieving the tension in your lower back, massages are crucial to improving your overall wellness. Once your tendons and muscles are healed from their office-related aches, regular massage can promote healthy muscle tone and prevent future injuries. And as an added bonus, regular massages can also help to promote proper posture.
Taking care of your body will make every day more enjoyable and gratifying. Our knowledgeable team at Buena Vista Massage will be happy to discus your questions and concerns in greater detail and help you get on track for a healthier, more productive everyday! Call us today!