Believe it or not, most bad posture comes from sitting incorrectly at a desk, or while driving on a long journey. However, despite the fact that sitting incorrectly can cause pain to the muscle groups around the spine; there is a range of simple, non-physical exercises that everyone can do while in a seated position. Performing these sitting exercises once or twice a day can improve your posture and help guard against pains and strains caused by bad posture.
Sitting Exercise 1 – Sit straight
Simply sitting up straight in a chair without leaning your back on the chair back can tone a variety of muscles in your torso. Turn this straight posture into an exercise by pressing your knees together, flex your inner thighs muscles, squeeze your buttocks and keeping your back in a straight position, raise your chin so that you feel a stretch in the back of your neck. Try to maintain this position for a few minutes a day n order to improve your posture.
Sitting Exercise 2 – Leg Extensions
Sit on the edge of your chair with your arms by your sides. Now extend your right leg out straight and flex your foot. You should feel a slight tightening of the leg tendon muscle, and also a slight stretch in your lower back. Keep your leg pointed out for 30 seconds, before returning it the previous position and shifting attention to your other leg for a further 30 seconds. Repeat this exercise several times, making sure that you keep your back straight and your head looking forwards.
Sitting Exercise 3 – Arm circles
While still sitting on the edge of the chair, raise your arms straight out to your sides and move your shoulder blades as close together as you can. Now extend your arms with palms down and do 10 forward circles with your arms, followed by 10 backward circles. Now change your palm position to face up and repeat the forward and backward circle motions. This increases your flexibility and improves your posture.
Sitting Exercise 4 – Back Stretch
Sit on the edge of the chair seat and keep your body straight. Now place your right leg out in front of you at a 90-degree angle to your body, your hands behind your head and arch your back slightly so that you feel a stretch in the lower back. Now lower the leg and try the same with the other leg. Hold the position for at least 30 seconds before swapping legs. Having your hands behind you back raises your upper torso slightly and helps your posture through the centre of your upper body and diaphragm.
Sitting Exercise 5 – Lean forward
Now sitting further back in the chair, keep your back straight and don’t touch the back of the chair with your upper torso. Now bend your back to lean forward, as far as you comfortably can, and then hold the position for 10 seconds, before slowly return to a straight back position. Repeat this several times over a 10 minute period to develop better flexibility to help your posture and straighten your back muscles.