Whether you're working or studying at a desk all day, it usually ends with the same nagging neck and shoulder pain. The human body is designed to move, so when we sit in the same position for a long period of time our muscles can get really cranky. Many of my clients have a love-hate relationship with stretching, but it really is one of the best ways to get you moving because it doesn't require a lot of space and it can be done in just a few minutes without any equipment. It can get boring, so creating variety in your stretch routine is key. I like to use a combination of static and moving stretches to keep things interesting.
Neck and shoulder pain is one of the most common symptoms I see in home office workers. A typical desk posture creates tightness across the chest because it's held in a flexed position as we type and navigate with our mouse all day. This pulls the head and neck forward leading to discomfort in the back of the neck and across the top of the shoulders. Opening up the chest with movement helps keep these symptoms from building up throughout the day. Start with a moving windmill stretch and follow it up with a static cactus stretch to get the most bang for your buck. If you work a 9-5 schedule a couple of minutes for these moves around 10:30am and 3:30pm to keep yourself accountable.
The Windmill | Complete 8 arm circles per side.
The Cactus | Complete 2 4-breath holds per side.