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Back ache? Poor posture? Sitting at a desk all day may be to blame.
“Sitting down all day at work and in our make-shift home offices can take its toll on our posture, with many people hunched over smaller screens for hours, wreaking immediate havoc on the back and our general posture while potentially causing long-term issues of back pain,” explains Owen Maskell from Better, a social enterprise aiming to provide fitness facilities for all.
“Staying as active as possible and taking regular breaks to complete a few easy but effective stretches to open the body and improve core strength is essential to ensure we avoid slipping into that slumped posture we know all too well.”
To help, the personal trainers at Better have created this swift, five-minute workout designed to stretch out the back and engage the core in between coffee breaks. Repeat it regularly and you’ll improve your posture in no time.
Complete each exercise for 30 seconds before moving to the next one, and complete two rounds of each for a total of five minutes.
Squats with raised arms
Stand with feet around hip-width apart and arms raised overhead
Keep a straight back as you squat down as if sitting in a chair
Go down to a 90-degree angle and return with arms still spread in the air.
Lat stretch (both arms overhead)
Stand straight with your arms raised above your head and arms close to ears
Join your hands together and push your shoulder blades down and back
Retain this position and lean to each side to feel the stretch on the opposite side of your torso.
Back extension with reverse fly
Lie on your front with your hands beside your shoulders and legs down on the ground
Lift your chest off of the ground and squeeze your shoulder blades back
Release and lower your torso back to the floor and repeat, letting you lower back doing the work to lift your torso.
Lie on the floor facing upwards, with bent knees and feet flat on the floor with arms straight out by your side and palms down
Lift your hips off the ground until you form a straight line with your knees, hips and shoulders, squeezing your glutes and engaging your core
Hold this position for a few seconds and slowly return to the floor.
Simple bicycle kicks
Lie flat on your back, with both legs extended and place arms flat by your sides
Bend one knee toward your chest, keeping the opposite leg extended
Squeeze at the peak and repeat on the opposite side.
Move celebrates exercise in all its forms, with accessible features encouraging you to add movement into your day – because it’s not just good for the body, but the mind, too. We get it: workouts can be a bit of a slog, but there are ways you can move more without dreading it. Whether you love hikes, bike rides, YouTube workouts or hula hoop routines, exercise should be something to enjoy.