Studies have linked a sedentary lifestyle to greater risk for health issues from diabetes to dementia, so moving regularly throughout the day (even at work) is crucial. But office jobs and travel make it difficult for most of us to do this as often as we should.
That's where this workout comes in handy.
I designed this quick, four-move routine to make you feel better in just minutes. Through a combination of stretching and strength work, these exercises will target your core, lower back, hips, and legs to reset your body after a long day of sitting. Try to perform each exercise for one minute, flowing from one to the next. If you need, you can rest for 20-30 seconds between each move.
1. Sit upright with your legs extended out wider than your hips. Reach your arms out from your sides.
2. Twisting from your spine above the pelvis, rotate over to one side with that arm reaching back. Pulse here with control three times.
3. Return to starting position and repeat to the other side.
1. Lying on your back, point your legs upward and reach your hands around one ankle or calf; drop the other leg down to about 45 degrees.
2. Curl your head, neck, and shoulders up off the floor and look down at your core. Gently pulse the raised leg closer to your body (two times), as your hamstring allows.
3. Switch legs and repeat. Keep switching, and remember to keep your core pulled in the whole time.
1. Sit up tall and reach your arms out to the sides.
2. Twist and rotate your spine to one side while keeping your pelvis grounded. Reach the opposite hand to that side's foot, trying to keep your chest open as you do so.
3. Come back up through centre and switch sides; continue alternating, and make sure you don't bounce or rush the movement.
1. Sit in a Z position with one leg bent in front and one leg bent behind you (this helps to open up your hips). If this position hurts, sit with your legs out long in front of you.
2. Reach one arm out to the side, take a deep inhale, and then extend it up and over toward the opposite side. Try to not crunch, but rather lift upward to open the sides of your body.
3. Return to starting position and repeat on the other side.
This originally appeared on Prevention US.