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DESKERCISE: Exercises To Do While at Work Desk

October 13th, 2016



DESKERCISE: Exercises To Do While at Work Desk



Before, people tend to associate “work” with intense labor filled with sweat, blood, and tears. However, in this digital era, most workers are glued to their office chairs, finding no time for physical activity that can greatly impact their overall wellness.

According to many studies, prolonged sitting can increase the chance of acquiring serious health conditions such as cardiovascular diseases, metabolic syndrome, and increased blood sugar level. Oftentimes, finding the time to hit the gym or do a round of exercise could be very difficult.

But worry no more! Now, there’s a smart way to stay fit without leaving your desk. Deskercise refers to the physical activity that you can squeeze into your busy schedule without trouble. Doing some deskercise will help you combat the risks that comes along with spending too much time sitting in your workstation.

In this article, you will learn about the health problems caused by prolonged sitting, as well as the deskercises that you can perform to preserve wellness and proper body functioning.

Health Problems Caused by Prolonged Sitting

Health Problems Caused by Prolonged Sitting

Your 9 to 5 day job means that you spend more time sitting and less time to exercise. Most studies stated that sitting too much can expose a person to numerous health risks. And if you are not yet aware of those risks,  below are some of the health problems that are associated with  prolonged sitting:


1. Stress-Related Illnesses

In today’s workplace, about 46 percent of adults consider their job as the major source of stress. It can be associated with various factors such as excessive workload, pressured to meet work expectations, lack of social support, and many more.


Stress can make you get sick more often. 77% of workers claimed that they have been experiencing symptoms caused by stress. These symptoms include low energy, tensed muscles, rapid heartbeat, and moodiness. It can also worsen one’s anxiety, insomnia, headache, and depression.

Most countries in the world have been associating stress as one of the factors that cause cardiovascular diseases. For instance, acquiring chronic stress is linked to the increased rate of high blood pressure, heart attack, and hypertension.


2. Weight Gain

According to CBS News, 46% of workers doing desk jobs were reported to gain weight because of inadequate physical activity.


How does it happen? Being in the chair for a long period of time might cause your muscles to prompt a change in metabolism and produce a number of biomarkers that are linked to cancer. Basically, if prolonged sitting is  a part of your everyday routine, you have higher chances of acquiring serious health problems.


3. Eyestrain

An average worker spends seven to eight hours a day on the computer monitor. As a result, they experience eye strain and other eye discomforts.


Symptoms of eye strain include tired, itching eyes, dry eyes, blurred vision, increased sensitivity to light, headaches, and many more. Sometimes, eye strain can be a sign of an underlying condition especially when it is associated with severe headache and other eye problems.


4. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Oftentimes, office workers  experience numbness, pain, and ache in their fingers and wrists. These are symptoms of a condition called Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. It occurs when the median nerve (located in your upper limb) becomes twisted and compressed at the wrist.


Early symptoms include burning and itching numbness in the arm and fingers. As the symptoms worsen, sufferers may feel tingling, decreased grip strength, and complete numbness of hand. Women have higher chances of experiencing the syndrome, because the carpal tunnel of women is much smaller, causing it to compress easily.

It can go away without undergoing any treatment, but not all the time. These non-surgical options include nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, exercise, acupuncture and chiropractic care. However, if symptoms persist for six months, undergoing surgical procedures might be considered.



Deskercises That You Should Try At Your Work Desk

Spending your whole day in the office restricts you to find time for workouts. However, you should look for ways  to combat the harmful effects of desk jobs in your overall physical state. You can make the most out of your time by squeezing in some office desk exercises while doing your tasks. These simple office exercises will help you in a way that it can increase your concentration and make you even more productive.


Here are the office exercises to keep you active and make the most out of your day at work:


1. Office Exercises For Your Eyes: Strengthen your eye muscles and maintain a good level of vision by doing these eye exercises.


Eye Exercise | Side to Side Eye Movement

a.) Side to Side Eye Movement. Sit upright and look straight ahead. Without moving your head, look to the right and focus on the first thing you see. Look to the left, and focus on what you see. Repeat the exercise five times, and the cycle three times.

Eye Exercise | Up and Down Eye Movement

b.) Up and Down Eye Movement. After doing side to side eye movements, continue your eye exercise by looking up and down and focus on what you see. Repeat the exercise five times, and the cycle three times.


Eye Exercise | Diagonal Eye Movement

c.) Diagonal Eye Movement. Maintain your sitting position, and look straight ahead. Then look down and then to the left. Move your eyes diagonally, then look to the right while focusing on what you see. Repeat the exercise five times, and the cycle three times.


Eye Exercise | Rolling Your Eyes in Circles

d.) Rolling Your Eyes in Circles. Look to the left, and move your eyes slowly in a clockwise motion. Look down, then move your eyes and look to the right. Do the exercise five times in clockwise and counterclockwise motion. Repeat the cycle three times.



Eye Exercise | Near and Far Focus

e.) Near and Far Focus. Focus on a 20 to 30 cm nearby object (can be a pencil or any small object you can grab). Then look at something distant and try to see it in detail. Then look at your object again. Repeat the exercise five times, and the cycle three times.


Eye Exercise | Eye Massage

f.) Eye Massage. Close your eyes then squeeze it while shut tightly for two to three seconds. Relax the muscles in your eyes, then repeat the exercise ten times.



2. Office Exercises For Your Neck: A sedentary lifestyle in the office might lead you to acquiring neck strain. Lack of proper neck exercise will cause you serious illnesses such as recurring headaches, high blood pressure, and degenerative disc disease. Here are some neck exercises to do at your desk.


Neck Exercise | Neck Stretch

a.) Neck Stretch. With your sitting position, glide your head straight back until you feel a stretch in your neck. Hold each position for ten seconds, and repeat the exercise three to five times.


Neck Exercise | Side Bend

b.) Side Bend. Keep your shoulders back and relax your arms. Slowly drop your head to one side, with your ear towards your shoulder until you feel a stretch. Avoid your neck from bending backwards and downwards. Hold each position for ten seconds, and repeat several times on both sides.

Neck Exercise | Rotating Neck Flexion

c.) Rotating Neck Flexion. Keep your shoulders and arms relaxed. Lower your head with your neck parallel to the floor. Turn your head first to one side, then the other. Repeat several times.



3. Office Exercises For Your Hands, Shoulder, and Arms: Your hands, shoulders, and arms are not exempted from being stiff throughout the workday. Here are some office exercises to prevent further injuries and illnesses you can acquire from the extended use of mouse and keyboard.


Hand Exercise | Hand Stretches

a.) Hand Stretches. Relax the muscles in your hand. Make fists, spread, and bend your fingers. Repeat until you feel that your hand muscles are all stretched.


b.) Wrist Bend. Hold the upper part of your hand with the other hand. Slowly bend your wrist down and up until an extreme stretch is felt.


Shoulder Exercise | Shoulder Stretch

c.) Shoulder Stretch. Raise your shoulders towards the ears until slight tension felt across shoulders. Hold for ten seconds, and repeat three to five times.

Shoulder Exercise | Shoulder Roll

d.)Shoulder Roll. Sit straight and relax your back. Slowly roll your shoulders in a circular motion. Repeat several times.

Arms Exercise | Straight Arm Squeeze

e.) Straight Arm Squeeze. Sit up straight on your office chair. Extend your hands behind you, and keep your palms in. Squeeze your arms against the back of the chair, then release. Repeat the exercise ten times.



4. Office Exercises For Your Torso: Getting locked into the office chair can cause chronic back pain and poor posture. Below are office exercises that will improve the condition of your back and torso.

Torso Exercise | Spinal Twist

a.) Spinal Twist. Sit on the edge of your chair with both feet relaxed on the floor, and your knees apart. Place your hands behind your head, widely bend your elbows, and keep your arms parallel to the floor. Twist your upper body to the left and right. Repeat several times.

Torso Exercise | Back Arches

b.) Back Arches. Keeping your previous position, place your hands onto your knees. Slowly lean backwards while bringing your shoulders, neck and head backward, and look up to the ceiling. Hold the position for ten seconds, and repeat the exercise several times.


c.) Seated Forward Fold. Sit up straight with both of your feet flat on floor. Bend your knees and bring them close together. Fold forward over your thighs without creating a hunched position. You can grasp your shins with your hand to hold the position easier. Repeat one to two times.

Torso Exercise | Abdominal Stretch

d.) Abdominal Stretch. Sit on the edge of your office chair and extend your arms in front of you. Keep your back straight and relaxed, then start to contract your abdominal muscles. Repeat several times.


e.) Gluteal Squeeze. Tense your buttocks muscles and hold it for ten seconds.



5. Office Exercises For Your Legs and Feet: Sitting all day makes your body completely unloaded. Due to this inactivity, you might start to feel the sudden numbness and a tight ache in your legs. Thus, these office exercises for your legs and feet would be a great help to reduce the lower body discomforts acquired from sitting all day at work.


Legs and Feet Exercise | Toe Raises

a.) Toe Raises. Try to lift your toes while keeping your heels locked on the ground. Repeat the exercise until you feel a good stretch.


b.) Ankle Stretch. This exercise will help you to ease the tension in both your feet and ankles.To do this, lift your ankle then flex it in a pumping action. You can also do ankle rotations in a clockwise and counterclockwise motion. Repeat the stretch in both directions ten times.

Legs and Feet Exercise | Hip Flexions

c.) Hip Flexions. While sitting on the edge of your chair, lift your foot at a minimal distance off of the floor. Bend your knees at a 90 degree angle and hold the position as long as you can.


d.) Seated Leg Raises. To keep your leg muscles in good shape, sit straight on your office chair and extend your leg in front of you. Squeeze your thigh and lift the leg up and down in a controlled manner. For a complete feel of burning calories, repeat this office exercise fifteen to twenty times.




6. Office Exercises For Your Whole Body: Lack of overall body movement will lead to chronic muscle aches and pain. That’s why, you need to move your body and do these set of office exercises that will coordinate your whole body.


a.) Pretend Jump Rope. While sitting in your office chair, move your arms like you are turning a jump rope and hop either on both feet or alternating feet.

Whole Body Exercise | Chair Squats

b.) Chair Squats. Lift your rear end a few inches away from your seat and hold the position for several seconds.


Whole Body Exercise | Chair Dips

c.) Chair Dips. Place your hands at the edge of your chair and keep your feet relaxed on the floor. Move your rear end at the edge of your seat. Bend your elbows and position your body a bit lower. Straighten your arms and repeat the exercise.


d.) Desk Chair Swivel. Would you believe that your swivel chair could provide fun and fitness all at once? Sit upright with your feet on the floor, then hold the edge of your desk. Start swivelling your chair from side to side, back and forth for fifteen rounds. Now that’s a quick oblique abs fix!


The Benefits of Doing Office Exercises While at Work


The Benefits of Doing Office Exercises While at Work


Doing regular exercise, even the simplest forms of exercise should have a part in a person’s daily routine. It does not only improve our physical health, providing us with a more toned muscles, healthier heart, and well-functioning body. But over the decades, social scientists discovered that exercise doesn’t only enrich the physical aspect of a person but also gives enormous benefits on a person’s mental health.

Though it may be a hard time to incorporate exercise into a busy employee’s daily routine, you should always find a way on how to keep yourself moving. Thus, doing simple office exercises will help you combat the risks of a sedentary lifestyle.

Here are the cognitive benefits you can expect as a result of engaging some office exercises while at workplace:


Improved concentration and comprehension

Enhanced creativity

Faster learning

Sharper memory

Reduced stress

Prolonged mental stamina

Improved work ability and performance

Elevated mood

Though work is one of the important things a person should care for, including some activities to improve your well-being should also have the most value. Through this, you and your job would benefit a lot from it.

Did you find this article helpful? Got anything to add to our list of office exercises? Leave us your thoughts through the comment section below!





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