Pain Free Working

Ab Workouts To Do in the Office

Having busy schedules and a ton of commitments at work can prevent you from exercising daily. Most office workers spend almost 8 hours sitting and according to studies, that’s not really good for the body. Our bodies are not made for prolonged sitting. When we sit for too long, we’re at risk of developing several health conditions such as muscle aches, back pain, belly fat, and more. 

It’s important to keep those health issues at bay, especially the ones concerning our core. After all, our core connects every part of the body, making it highly essential for overall fitness. When any part of our core is in pain, it can be rather difficult to move around, let alone work. Fortunately, there are exercises that you can do to work your abs even when you’re stuck in your office chair. Try them out!

Benefits Of Desk Exercises

As the name suggests, desk exercises are workouts that can be done while you’re in your chair at work. They usually don’t require any equipment except for your table and chair. Doing exercises at work allows you to keep moving and be active while sitting. 

They help in blood circulation, building strength, and preventing muscle stiffness. They also improve your posture, boost your energy, and reduce your stress. They also help you in avoiding sitting-related diseases in the long run. 

It’s recommended to fit in about 20 to 30 minutes of physical activity each day. You may not have the time to do exercises in one go, but you can definitely split them up as you go about your schedule. For example, do a stretch for 5 minutes, and then do tricep workouts for 10 minutes later, and so on. This way, you can incorporate more movement around the clock.

Can You Do Ab Exercises At Your Desk?

Yes, you definitely can! It’s not impossible at all to strengthen your abdominal muscles while you’re at your desk. Your chair and table are more than enough to do any ab exercise. If you want to challenge yourself even more when doing ab workouts, you may switch your desk chair out and use a stability ball instead. There’s no shortage of ab workout routines that you can do at your desk. You don’t even need to hit up the gym to get your desired results.

How Can I Work My Abs at Work?

Keeping your abdominal muscles in great shape is a vital part of having a healthy lifestyle. By strengthening your core muscles, you can improve your posture, protect yourself from back injury, give your body definition, and reduce the risk of numerous health issues. Try doing these seated ab workouts throughout your day! 

Squeeze them in during your lunch break, or take a 5 minute break before a meeting, or do in between your tasks, and the like. You don’t even need to go to the gym or hire a personal trainer to do these! One thing to keep in mind is to check your desk or chair first as they may have wheels and if they do, lock them in place before starting on your workouts.

How To Strengthen Your Core With Ab Exercises at Your Desk

Seated Bicycle Crunches

Sit on the edge of your chair and place your hands behind your head, feet flat on the ground. Slowly lean your torso back until it grazes your chair back. Keep your torso straight. In one fluid motion, sit back up while lowering your right elbow to your left knee, lifting your left leg so the knee meets the elbow. 

Try to keep your hands behind your head the entire time. Return to your starting pose. Your movements should be like a bicycle motion. Repeat each repetition 20 times.

Seated Leg Pull-Ins

Sit on the front edge of your chair with your legs together and bent at the knees, feet flat on the floor. Have your back straight and your shoulders back and relaxed. Lean back 45 degrees. Hold onto your seat on either side of your thighs, engaging your abs while still leaning back. 

Slowly draw your knees in toward your chest. Next, unbend them and extend your legs out at 45 degrees, hold for a second, and then draw them back in, bending your joints once more. Repeat for about 20 times.

Core Leg Lift

This exercise works not only your abs but also your quadriceps and hip flexors. For starters, sit up straight in your seat. Contract your abs, lifting one foot off the floor about six inches, your knee coming straight up with the foot directly underneath. 

Try to maintain a 90-degree angle in the knee. Hold for 10 seconds, and slowly lower it as you relax your abs. Repeat with the opposite side, and then alternate throughout the exercise.

Chair Dips

For this exercise, get on the edge of the chair and spread your legs so that they’re placed in front of you. Next, grab the edge of the chair with both hands. Go up and down, raising your body with the help of your hands. Do about 15 reps.

Chair Suitcase

This one targets all your ab muscles except for the obliques. Position yourself on the edge of your seat and lean back until your upper back touches the back of the chair. Tuck your tailbone under and hold onto the arms of your chair for support. Next, bring your knees up, with your shins parallel to the floor. 

This allows your torso and thighs to make an “open suitcase.” Close the “suitcase” by bringing your chest and knees toward one another. Open and close for 10 to 20 reps in two to three sets. As much as possible, keep your back straight and support your upper body on the arm rests as you do this.

Plank With Knee Twist

Yes, it’s possible to use your chair to hold a plank position! Start off by placing your hands shoulder-distance apart on your seat and extend your legs behind you, assuming a plank pose. Draw your abs in toward your spin, maintaining a rigid back as you pull your right knee toward your left elbow. 

Twist your torso to dip your right hip toward the chair. Return to center and repeat with theon the other side. Switch between each side for about one minute, or do a total of 20 to 30 reps.

Desk Push-Ups

Before doing this exercise, make sure that your table is sturdy enough to support your weight or that you won’t injure yourself doing this. Start by taking a few steps back and place your hands on your table, shoulder-width apart. Lower yourself down toward your table and push back up until your arms are straight.

By doing any of these exercises each day, you’ll be able to get your minutes worth of physical activity and stay fit. Do remember that if you experience any kind of discomfort during any exercise, take some time to rest before continuing. You may also seek a personal trainer or a doctor for professional advice.

Looking for a stability ball or other exercise equipment that you can add to your workspace? Check out our reviews

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.