As many of our working lives have changed due to the Covid pandemic, it is now more important than ever to look at our changing lifestyle. Many of us may have walked or cycled to work, or at least had a short walk from the car park! Going up stairs to attend meetings was also part of many people’s days. Going out to get lunch was another way where we stayed mobile during the day. Working from home has reduced these naturally occurring bursts of movement, which are vitally important in reducing aches and pains throughout our muscles. Short movement breaks also aid concentration and general good mental health.
These small movement breaks can be easily incorporated in to our day. They really don’t have to be difficult, as we are more likely to be consistent if we develop simple steps in maintaining our health.
Here are a few ideas to get you started!
Standing up is a very effective way to get the blood flowing through our muscles. This slight change of position can stretch out our backs and legs, while also giving our eyes a break from the screen. An easy way to do this while working is to take your calls while standing up. To start with, aim to add in 30 mins of standing throughout the workday. This can then be increased week by week.
Regular exercise is seen to have huge health benefits, even if this is taken in short bursts. Sitting for long periods of time and saving up all the exercise for one long session, may lead to stiff sore muscles which can then become damaged if they are not utilised more. We don’t have to hop up and do 20 jumping jacks….although you could if you wanted to! Instead let’s think of creative ways to squeeze in those short bursts. For example, don’t bring in everything from the car in one go, why not pop out during the day for the rest of your belongings. Maybe bring in the bins one at a time, or change one round of bedclothes each day mid-morning. If you don’t have stairs, perhaps a couple of laps around the house mid-afternoon would blow away the cobwebs. Being outdoors is proven to enhance our mental health and cognitive abilities so stepping outside will literally do us the world of good!
Seated stretches are exactly as the name suggests, addressing those pains and aches we get from being on our laptops all day. A great stretch for the neck is to simple look over each shoulder until you feel a slight stretch along the opposite side of the neck. Remember to do these movements nice and slowly and only as far as the stretch is comfortable. Our hands are also very important to look after as long periods of typing can leave our wrists and fingers feeling stiff and achy. Rotating the wrists for a minute in both directions followed by opening and closing a fist, is a wonderful exercise that is quick and easy to do and is very effective.
In the meantime, if you are suffering from pains and aches, I am an expert in treating sore muscles. I would be delighted to hear from you and get you healed with one of my many massage services. Visit me in Urban Wellbeing for your massage in Galway city.