Does your job demand you to spend most of your work hours sitting in front of a desk typing away or using your computer? Have you started experiencing backaches due to your desk job? If the answer is a resounding yes, you need to invest in a top-quality ergonomic and adjustable standing desk and chair. You also need to perform stretches during the day to alleviate the stress your body undergoes daily.
Sitting in the same position for hours on end can lead to skeletal misalignment and muscular imbalances, resulting in back pain. If left unchecked, your pain will continue to worsen and start affecting your quality of life as it will limit your functions and demand medical attention and treatment. However, you can prevent all that from happening and alleviate your work discomfort and pain by performing quick stretches.
Poor Posture while Working Takes a Toll on Your Back
Most of us tend to sit in awkward positions while working for long hours on end. Many working individuals are guilty of slumping down in their chairs, rounding their shoulders forward, and craning their necks while working at a desk. However, poor posture has serious consequences, such as chronic neck and back pain and other health complications such as carpal tunnel.
Even though there are multiple solutions to chronic backache, including an adjustable standing desk and ergonomic chair for back pain, you also need to take care of your body to alleviate your pain. It’s where exercises and back stretch enter the picture. When performed correctly, quick back stretches can help you avoid muscular stiffness and shortness, which often results in backaches.
Why Take Stretching Breaks during the Day?
Stretching exercises can help you break up your workday and encourage the lengthening of your back muscles and all associated tendons. They essentially help you alleviate the pain that you feel due to the tightening of muscles that occurs due to prolonged inactivity and maintaining an awkward posture.
`Taking regular stretching breaks helps increase the blood flow to your muscles, enables your joints to work to their complete range of motion, and decreases muscle stiffness, strain, and tension. Apart from stretching, you also need to invest in high-quality ergonomic products to alleviate your pain and rest your body. You can invest in the Comhar All-in-One Standing Desk Glass Top and a premium-quality ergonomic chair to make your work hours easier on your body.
8 Quick Stretches to Avoid Back Pain While Working
Here are eight quick stretches you can perform during the day to keep back pain associated with long desk job hours at bay:
Happy Baby Pose
This stretching pose helps alleviate back pain and offers support to your muscles. All you have to do is stretch your hip adductors by lying face up with your knees bent and your feet flat on the ground. Then, lift your feet off the floor and hold their outside edges in your hands. Gently pull your feet toward your chest and then lower your knees toward the floor on either side of your body. Make sure your back is flat on the floor while you hold the pose for a minute or two.
If you have been experiencing back pain while bending forward during work hours, you can use this stretch to help stretch your lower back muscles and keep the pain at bay. This pose also helps activate the muscles around your spine, which helps you support these pain-prone areas.
To perform this pose, start with a low plank by forming a push-up position, then lowering your body halfway to the floor while keeping your elbows close to your body. Then, drop your hips down toward the floor while flipping your toes over to ensure the tops of your feet touch the ground.
Make sure to straighten your arms, tighten your core, and then push your chest up. Pull your shoulders back while squeezing your shoulder blades. Tilt your head toward the ceiling to open your chest and hold this position for 30 seconds. Work your way up to 1 minute or longer for optimal effect.
A quick knee-to-chest stretch will help relax your thighs, glutes, and hips while promoting back health and relaxing your body. To perform this stretch, you will need to lie down on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the ground. Then, extend your left knee straight out along the floor or keep it bent while drawing your right knee into your chest.
Fasten your hands at the top of your shinbone or behind your thigh. Make sure to lengthen your spine all day down to your tailbone while avoiding lifting your hips to alleviate your back pain. Breathe deeply to release any tension in your body. Hold the pose for up to 30 seconds and then release. Repeat the same process with your other knee.
Knees-to-Chest with Slow Rocking
If you want to perform an easier version of the knee-to-chest stretch, you can add a rocking motion while hugging both your knees simultaneously. This easy stretch will help you reduce your backache. Start with lying on your back with your feet straight. Bring both your knees into your chest and hug them. Slowly start rocking your torso back and forth while holding onto your legs. Do this for a minute or two to dispel the tension in your body and lessen your pain.
This pose helps you create a natural lower back curve to keep pain at bay. It also engages your abs, which helps your body support your lower back. To perform this pose, you need to lie on your stomach and keep your legs together and straight out behind you. Then, put your forearms on the floor and elbows under your shoulders as you lift your chest off the floor.
Press your thighs and hips into the floor and lengthen your spine while keeping your shoulders relaxed. Slowly sit up just enough to keep your lower back stretching a little. Make sure that you don’t hyperextend your back, which might strain it. If you start feeling any discomfort or pain, stop stretching right away. You can minimize the hyperextension of your back by pulling your belly button in toward your spine.
This stretching pose effectively takes the pressure off your lower back by aligning and elongating your spine, which decompresses it and provides you with a nice stretch. To perform this stretch, kneel on your mat while keeping your knees as far apart as your hips and your feet together behind you. Inhale deeply and lay your torso over your thighs while exhaling slowly.
Draw your ribs away from your tailbone and keep the crown of your head away from your shoulders to lengthen your spine and neck. Rest your forehead on the floor while keeping your arms extended out in front of you. Hold this pose for a minute or two, and then relax your body before starting again.
Sometimes you can experience lower back pains because the back of your legs is so tight. If you feel that is your case, you will benefit from performing a downward-facing dog. This stretching pose will help you stretch your calves and hamstrings. If your body feels extra tight, you can bend your knees a little to make the stretch more comfortable for you.
Take up a child’s pose and keep your hands on the floor. Sit up on your knees and then lift your butt while pressing back into a downward dog-facing pose. Make sure to spread your fingers wide and straighten your legs while lowering your heels to the floor. Relax your head between your arms and look through your legs up toward your belly button. Hold your pose for 30 seconds to a minute, and then relax your body.
This fun stretch enables a nice flexion and extension of your spine and promotes mobility. It also effectively relieves any tension you might feel in your lower back due to long work hours. Cat/cow pose introduces you to what your neutral spine feels like, which helps you improve your posture.
To perform this pose, you need to be on all fours and keep your hips over your knees and your shoulders over your wrists. Breathe in slowly, and then while exhaling, curve your spine and drop your head toward the ground to take up the cat posture. Then, inhale and lift your chest, head, and tailbone toward the ceiling as you arch your back for the cow pose. Alternate between the two for up to 3 minutes.
The Bottom Line
Performing the stretches mentioned above can help you counterbalance the stress your back undergoes while you work long hours at your job. They will stretch your back muscles and alleviate any pain you might feel during your work time. With that said, it’s best if you also invest in top-quality ergonomic products, such as an adjustable standing desk and an ergonomic chair for back pain.