Sitting for long hours at the work desk is the curse of modern times. Our jobs demand a significant amount of dedicated time on our computers and laptops. The downfall is the immense impact it has on our bodies. One of the most common aches that people complain of is neck pain. Neck pain is directly associated with poor posture. When we concentrate for long hours on our screens, it is easy to slouch and forget all about maintaining a straight posture.
Another evolved version of neck pain is called ‘text neck’ which is caused due to people looking down at their phones constantly. Not just posture, mental well-being is as essential to avoiding neck pain. If you are under a lot of stress, it tends to get accumulated in the neck and shoulders.
We have gathered some simple stretches that you can try while sitting at your desk! Although nothing can beat routine exercise or massage, if you are complaining of neck pain often, just take out 15 minutes of your work time and try these.
Before trying any of the stretches, remember to sit up straight in your chair and do not slouch at any point.
#1. Flex the neck
All you have to do in this simple stretch is, sit straight and look straight ahead. Now look down on the floor for a few seconds, then bring your neck up. Now, look up to the ceiling and bring your neck to the front again. Turn your head slowly to the right and hold for a few seconds. Then turn your head to the left, maintain the position for a few seconds and come back to the original position. This simple exercise provides a lot of stretch to the overall muscles in your neck and can be considered a warm-up to the following stretches.
#2. Ear to shoulder
For this stretch, drop your head slowly to one side until your ear is close to your shoulder. Hold for a few seconds and bring your head up again. Repeat the process alternatively for each side, making sure only the head is tilted while the spine remains straight.
#3. Head roll
Relax your shoulders and lean your head forward. Now slowly roll the head until your ear touches the shoulder and hold for a few seconds. Repeat the same roll on the other side. Repeat it three times in each direction.
#4. Open the shoulder and neck
This one is slightly advanced; make sure that you feel comfortable while performing this one. Start with sitting on the edge of your chair. Take your arms behind your back and interlace the fingers of both hands. Keep the palms pressed towards each other. Now roll the shoulder down away from your ears. Tilt your neck towards the ceiling to open up the neck, shoulder, and chest.
Over the day, it is easy to ignore the body. Make as many changes as possible to accommodate your work desk according to your body’s needs. Remember that work-related hazards are not just related to people working in heavy industries. They can take place in all kinds of work environments, even office spaces.
There are easy ways to tackle these hazards. Set up timers and take frequent breaks and look up from the screen to avoid strain. If you can manage, take quick walks around the office at this time. And if you find that your time is limited, just try the above-recommended stretches. We hope these easy stretches provide you with the much-needed relief from the nasty neck pain!