Whether you work remotely or in an office, sitting upright for an entire day’s work can have a negative impact on the back and for some, it can lead to near-debilitating back pain. For this reason, regular stretching is vital to prevent work related injury.
The question is: what kinds of stretches should you do? The ergonomics experts at Solutions Northwest Inc. have provided some great stretching options. So, if you want to keep your back pain to a minimum, make sure to do these lower back stretches at work.
Standing Trunk Extension Stretch
The most basic back stretch exercise is the standing trunk extension stretch. This is a stretch wherein you stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, place your hands at the small of your back and lean back using your hands as a fulcrum. It stretches not only the back muscles but the abdominal muscles as well.
When doing this stretch, you have the option to either hold it in place for an extended period or do it repeatedly in sets. If holding it, do so for around 10 seconds. If doing it repeatedly, do it in sets of 10.
Seated Lateral Trunk Stretch
One of the best seated back stretch exercises is the seated lateral trunk stretch. To do this stretch, lean forward on the edge of your chair with your feet planted firmly on the ground.
Then, place one hand on its corresponding thigh while placing the opposite hand over your head, stretching it as far as it can go. Hold for around 10 seconds, and then switch arms. This will offer a substantial stretch to the whole of the lower back.
Seated Hamstring Stretch
Another stretch to try out is the seated hamstring stretch. To do this stretch, sit on the edge of your seat, supporting yourself with one foot flat on the floor. Then, extend your other foot out so that its corresponding leg is straight, and its heel is the only portion touching the ground.
While doing this, place your hands on your waist and straighten out your back. Hold the position for 10 seconds and then switch legs, doing so repeatedly for 2 or 3 sets. This will stretch both your lower back and your hamstrings.
Seated Figure 4 Stretch
If you’re looking to stretch the hip area, you should try the seated figure 4 stretch. This stretch is performed in a chair with one leg crossed over the other. When crossing the leg, make sure that the ankle is just over the opposite knee.
Then, place the adjoining hand on the crossed knee, and press down with it to produce a stretch on the opposite hip. Hold this stretch in place for around 10 seconds and then switch sides.
In conclusion, doing these lower back stretches at work can make all the difference.
When it comes to preventing pain and injury in the workplace, doing these lower back stretches at work can make all the difference. They’ll keep you loose and counteract any aching you might experience.
Whether you work remotely or in an office, the best way to evaluate your workstation for maximum comfort (and minimal injury) is to hire an ergonomics company to evaluate and assess your workstation. Contact the ergonomics experts at Solutions Northwest Inc. to evaluate your workstation.
Check out the rest of our ergonomics blog for more advice about safety and comfort in the workplace.
SPECIAL NOTE: Due to the recent COVID-19 Pandemic, many office workers are working from home for the first time. If you or your employ is working at home, contact our Ergonomics Consultants for a $50 Virtual Ergonomics Evaluation for your workstation – work in comfort, from home!
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