De-stress and learn how to combat standing-desk-aches by trying yoga at your desk.
So you’ve recently made the switch to a standing desk. Reading up on all the health benefits of doing away with your chair, you decided a change was in order. But as soon as you started standing throughout the day, your back started to hurt. And your knees began to ache. And you were absolutely exhausted three hours into the workday. What’s going on!?
Many office workers experience some trouble adjusting to a standing desk. If you don’t adopt proper posture and exercise regularly you can find yourself putting unnecessary strain on certain parts of your body. If you’re not used to being on your feet all day, there is a practical approach you can take to ease yourself into a standing desk – doing some basic yoga at your desk every day to condition your muscles for long-term standing.
There’s no advanced level mastery needed – you won’t be doing a headstand to build up resistance. First, invest in a pair of comfortable shoes that provide adequate support. Formal footwear isn’t the best option for standing desks. Then, make sure you have some space around you to begin yoga at your desk. Every three hours or so, follow this short yoga sequence, courtesy of MNN.com and Lilly Kovesi, a yoga teacher based in Connecticut. We’ll provide links to all of the poses so you always know what to do!
First, begin by getting into Mountain Pose, a popular starting position for yoga. Then work your way into a Standing Half Moon. While a Half Moon position involves stretching your legs as you touch the ground, a Standing Half Moon will help you stretch and activate those core muscles in your back and abdomen needed for proper standing.
After returning to center from the Standing Half Moon, go into Tree Pose on each side to help you find your balance and begin practicing equal distribution on both feet while standing at your desk. After Tree Pose move back into Mountain Pose and extend both of your arms over your head (also called the Upward Salute).
Then, interlace all of your fingers behind your back and slowly fold forward until you are in Yoga Mudra position. From there go into your final pose, which is a slight variation on the Standing Forward Fold. To make it easier, only put one hand on the ground and extend the other arm upward, toward the sky. Then, go back into Mountain Pose to complete your sequence.
This yoga workout focuses on your posture and loosens up your muscle groups that tend to tighten so you can stand with proper form at your desk. Adjusting to a standing desk after sitting for your entire life may prove challenging, but it will also prove rewarding!
In addition to practicing yoga at your desk every so often, you can make the most out of your standing desk by utilizing a Wurf board when you’re not on a break or doing yoga. The Wurf board keeps your muscles engaged by forcing your body to execute subconscious micro movements throughout the day. You’ll feel more energized, and along with the yoga workout it will greatly benefit your overall posture.
Begin working these poses and stretches into your workday and you’ll be comfortable at your standing desk in no time.