7 Desk Stretches to Avoid Back Pain

7 Desk Stretches to Avoid Back Pain

Over the past ten years, more and more studies have shown that sitting still at an office desk day after day is very damaging to the body. If you are not careful about how you sit, type, hold your phone, and do other repetitive tasks, you are damaging your muscles, bones and joints. This can lead to carpal tunnel syndrome, tennis elbow, and other stress related injuries caused by the strain of repetitive tasks and bad work habits. One of the best ways to help prevent or limit the damage to your body is to take quick breaks during your work to stretch at your desk.

Each of these exercises only takes a few minutes. In order to give your body the breaks that it needs, it is best to stretch every 30-60 minutes. Set an alarm on your cell phone or computer to remind yourself to get up and stretch.

  1. Stand and sit

Simply stand up and sit back down without using your hands. While this can actually be a little difficult if you are not used to it, but once you are it is the simplest of ways to give your body a break from sitting.

  1. Shoulder Shrug

Sit or stand with your back straight. Breathe in deeply as you shrug your shoulders by trying to lift them up towards your ears. Hold them there for five seconds. Release and relax. Repeat three times.

  1. Shake and Nod

Sit or stand with your back straight. Begin with your head level and shake your head slowly from side to side several times. Then nod your head up and down slowly several times.

  1. Hand Circles

Stretch both hands in front of you with palms up and clench your hands into fists.

Make circles in the air with your fists, pivoting at your wrists. Circle in in one direction ten times, then make circles in the opposite direction ten times. Shake out your hands to loosen them.

  1. Torso Twist

Sit in your chair straight with legs evenly on the floor. Inhale deeply. As you exhale, turn to the right by twisting your torso. Your buttocks should not move in your chair. It may help to grab the back of your chair with your right hand, and at the same time grab the arm of your chair with your left hand. Keep your eyes level.

Use your grip on the chair to twist your torso as far to the back of the room as possible, but do not force it too far. Stop and hold when you begin to feel your back stretching. Slowly come back to facing forward and repeat for the left side.

  1. Leg Extensions

Sit up straight and hold the seat of your chair with both hands. Slowly extend your legs straight in front of you until they are parallel with the floor. Point your toes straight, then flex your ankles so your toes point to the ceiling. Repeat pointing and flexing five times.

  1. Body Hug

Sit or stand with your back straight. Hug your own body by placing your right hand on your left shoulder and your left hand on your right shoulder. Breathe in and out. Focus on relaxing the area between your shoulder blades.

Stretching at your desk is an important way to give your body the breaks it needs to stay healthy. You are not a machine and your body was not meant to stay in the same position for hours on end. If you already suffer from any mild or serious pain, contact us at (818) 962-0559 for a consultation. While regular stretching can help you avoid many possible forms of injury, proper medical treatment and physical therapy are necessary if you are already injured. We are dedicated to helping you reach a higher quality of life, and offer the latest treatments and therapies with understanding and compassion. All locations are wheelchair accessible and designed for your convenience, comfort and privacy. Contact us at (818) 962-0559 today.


Advanced Pain Institute

Contact Us

*New Patients Welcome!

Call Us Today:
Arcadia: (626) 445-2371
Encino: (818) 784-3125


638 W Duarte Rd Suite 18,
Arcadia, CA 91007

16250 Ventura Blvd #165,
Encino, CA 91436