Pain Free Working

5-Day Office Core Workout Challenge

Office workers spend the majority of their day being seated, working on tasks throughout the day. Recently, more workers have adapted the sit-stand method of working and while it’s a highly suggested method, not everyone can switch to it due to a number of factors. If you have a job that requires you to be seated but still aim to be active and be on top of your health, here’s something that you can challenge yourself to do!

How Can I Strengthen My Core While Sitting In My Office Chair?

One way to strengthen your core is to switch up your seating option. Instead of having a traditional office chair, swap it out for an exercise ball from time to time. You’ll be forced to straighten up your back in order to not fall, offering a passive workout as you do your tasks. To do this properly, it’s important to maintain your posture. Relax your shoulders, keep them back, round out your chest slightly, and remember to not slouch. Not only does having a proper posture help in strengthening your midsection, but it also helps you avoid health issues such as back pain, shoulder aches, neck strain, and the like. 

If you don’t have the budget for an alternative seat, worry not for you can still do the same thing by pretending that there’s a piece of gum on your back and you have to avoid it as much as you can. Assess your posture and prevent yourself from leaning back to avoid the “gum.” Keep your shoulders relaxed, your muscles engaged, your back straight, and your ears aligned with your hips.

Another way to increase your core strength is by doing exercises. You may not have the time to do numerous ones but don’t worry, here are some workouts that you can do every day and you don’t even have to hit the gym to do it. To start, straighten yourself up in your chair, legs and thighs pressed together, feet flat on the floor, and your knees positioned at 90 degrees. Keep your arms relaxed at your sides. 

Afterward, lift your left arm up, bend at the elbow, and rest the palm of your hand on the back of your head. Engage your midsection and as you face forward, bend to the left. Use your left side obliques, squeezing slightly to raise your left hip. Keep your torso engaged as you slowly straighten up, returning to the initial position. Repeat about 10 times, and then switch sides. 

One more exercise that you can squeeze in during your lunch break is seated leg pull-ins. Position yourself on the brim of your seat, your legs together and bent at the knees, your soles flat against the flooring. Pull your upper half back about 45 degrees. Hold on to the edges of your seat and while leaning back, slowly draw your lower half upwards, and then extend your legs out at 45 degrees. Hold the position for a second, and then do the same motion again to count one rep. Do about 20 reps.

How Can I Work My Abdominal Muscles At My Desk?

Toning your abs while sitting at your desk is possible too! By doing ab exercises, you’ll be able to maintain your ideal body shape and get your blood flowing. To begin, sit on the front edge of your seat, knees bent at a 90-degree angle, with your feet flat on the ground. Raise your arms and bend them at the elbows, your fingers interlaced behind your head. 

Next, engage your core and lean back until you graze the back of your chair. Keep your back straight and your abs engaged. Next, straighten up your body once more and then lower your right elbow towards your left knee, lifting your left leg so that it meets your elbow. Try to keep your torso engaged and your fingers behind your head the entire time. Return to the starting position and repeat the motions, this time lowering your left elbow towards your right knee before returning to your starting position once more. That counts as one full repetition. Repeat each rep 20 times.

Final Note

Having an ergonomic seat to support your body and alternating between sitting and standing are just some of the ways that you can do to avoid being on your chair for too long. Aside from those, doing exercises can greatly help you in maintaining a strong body and core. Challenge yourself to do these exercises for 5 days and longer and you’ll start seeing their positive benefits on your health.

Tricia Montano

Tricia founded Pain Free Working in 2019 due to suffering from degenerative disc disease in her L5-S1 from working an office job for the past 18 years. She and her team strive on finding and reviewing the best office equipment to help fellow pain sufferers find relief and to enable people like her to do their jobs comfortably.