Sitting at a desk for hours at a time can leave you in a sad physical state. We understand that your office may not be the place for a workout, though. These three wall stretches are easy to do in almost any workplace and will mobilize your upper back, shoulders, forearms, and hands to combat the tightness that results from sitting and typing.
Taking a few minutes to care for yourself several times a day will improve your focus and help you to be more productive the rest of the day. While performing these stretches, remember to breathe calmly and relax — while going just deep enough into the stretch to feel it. Avoid going to the point of pain.
How to Do the Shoulder Wall Stretch
- Stand at arm’s length from a wall.
- Place your hands on the wall, fingers pointing up, straight out in front of your shoulders.
- Leaving your hands planted on the wall, take a step back, folding at the hip and opening the shoulder joint.
- Press your chest down toward the floor, tightening your thighs at the same time.
- Breathe calmly, relaxing your belly as you do.
- Hold this position (keep breathing!) for one minute.
How to Do the Chest Opener Stretch
- Use the same starting position as the shoulder stretch, with your hands against the wall.
- Spread your fingers out as wide as you comfortably can.
- Check for vertical alignment of your ankles, hips, and shoulders. (Stand up nice and straight.)
- Draw your shoulder blades down and together.
- One at a time, rotate your arms in your shoulder socket, keeping your hands in place, first outward, then inward as far as you can.
- Repeat for 3 sets of 20 in-out cycles per arm, pausing to gently shake out your arms and shoulders between sets.
How to Do the Forearm Stretch
- With your fingers pointing downward, place your palms at elbow height against the wall. Your elbows should be bent at close to ninety degrees and close to your sides.
- Draw your shoulder blades down and back and relax your belly. Breathe calmly and consistently.
- Hold this stretch for one minute.
- If a ninety-degree bend in your elbows is too much stretch for your forearms, slide your hands down the wall until you find the right amount of stretch for you. Over time, work to get your hands up to elbow height.