Five stretches to relieve pain

17 Mar, 2022

What you can do to protect yourself from the pain of a stationary lifestyle

Even if you aren’t doing any heavy lifting, desk workers are the most commonly-treated patients by physiotherapists in Melbourne. The long hours spent in one position, repeated across years and years, can put a lot of strain on a body. This can result in neck pain, shoulder pain, and lower back pain.

The best way to minimise that pain is to take a break to stretch every so often. While getting into the habit can certainly be a challenge, and you may feel like you’re wasting time, your body and your physiotherapist will thank you down the line. You would be saving yourself a whole world of aches, and protecting the health of your spine and muscles.

Before you back gives out and you end up in severe pain, here are some stretches you can do at work:

The Hip and Knee Stretch

The seated position can eventually jam the hips, and this exercise addresses this problem. To do this stretch, follow these steps:

  1. Place one knee on your chair and plant your opposite foot on the floor firmly.
  2. Use your desk for support, and bend gently towards the hip.

Repeat 3 sets of 10 repetitions on each side, holding the stretch for a few seconds each time.

The Trunk Rotation

This is a great stretch for those feeling stiffness in their lower back, and involves the following steps:

  1. Plant your feet facing forward firmly on the ground.
  2. Twist your upper body to each side, touching your arm to the back of your chair.

Hold this pose for 10 to 30 seconds and repeat as needed.

The Hamstring Stretch

Your hamstrings bear a lot of your weight while you remain seated, so it is important to manage these as well.

  1. Place one foot on your chair.
  2. Stand up with your hands on your hips and lean forward until you feel a slight stretch in your hamstrings.
  3. Hold the stretch for a few seconds, and then release.

Do 3 sets of 10 on each side.

The Pec Stretch

If you tend to slouch sometimes, some pec exercises might relieve pressure on your chest. You can do this through the following steps:

  1. Place one arm out to your side against a wall or solid place.
  2. Step forward with the foot closest to your outstretched arm and plant your foot on the ground.
  3. Place the other hand on your hip, and feel the hip away from the wall.
  4. Return backwards until your pectoral muscle stretches.

Do 3 sets of 10 reps on each side for this.

The Upper Trap Stretch

People who find themselves hunched over computers may feel some ache in their shoulders, which can be alleviated by doing the following exercise:

  1. Gently pull the head towards each shoulder.
  2. Hold the pose for a few seconds then drop the chin round towards the shoulder for an extra stretch.
  3. Alternate on each side.

Final thoughts

These are just some of the stretches you can do to alleviate some of your pains, but they are sure to help in a pinch. By doing these little exercises, you will be relieving the pain you feel and conditioning your body to move and position itself in such a way that reduces the likelihood of discomfort.

For extended pain that refuses to go away, however, you are likely to need the expertise of a physiotherapist. Set an appointment with us at Gen Physio if the pain is starting to get worse. We can go straight to your home in Melbourne, as well as Brisbane and the Gold Coast to treat your problems from the comfort of your own home.

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