Deskercise: Getting active while sitting
Credit: ISTOCK (RYANJLANE)
Doing "deskercises" can go a long way to preventing long term injuries and strains.
Back and Neck
The pencil pinch
A really simple exercise that you can keep under wraps even in the classroom. Just roll the back of your shoulder blades together as if you were holding a pencil between them and hold the pose for five to ten seconds. Release then repeat the process about ten to fifteen times, or until you are satisfied.
The nape shaper
This exercise can make you look unnecessarily tired, so make sure not to do it in a lecture in front of your professor. Place the bottom of the palms of your hand on your forehead right above your brow. Push against your forehead, but use your neck muscles to fight against the force. Hold the pressure for a few breaths then slowly release and repeat the process as many times as you feel comfortable. For an alternate version, clasp your hands behind your neck and lean back against them as if leaning back casually.
Target: shoulders, triceps, back
Sit up straight in your chair with feet together. Place your hands palm inwards to grab the back of your chair. Using yours hands as anchors, pull your arms in against the back of the chair. Do this about 10 times. Try also moving your hands up or down the back of the seat to make the workout harder.
The fab abs squeeze
No one will notice at all when you are toning your abs with this exercise. Take a breath and tighten the abdominal muscles. When you exhale bring the abs even further towards the spine holding this position for about five to 15 seconds. Release and repeat the process any number of reps you want.
The desk swivel
Have a wheely chair that you can’t get enough of moving around in? Try using it for this workout when you want to have fun. Sit upright with feet hovering above the floor. Hold onto the edge of your desk with your hands. With only your core, swivel the chair around from side to side, twisting those oblique abs into shape.
Legs and glutes
The silent squeeze
A workout that can be totally kept under wraps. Simply squeeze the glutes and hold it for five to ten seconds before releasing. Repeat as many times as you want, or until whatever lecture you are in is done and enjoy toning your buttocks without putting your body through hours of sweaty exercise.
The seated leg raiser
Easy to hide underneath your desk, leg raising targets toning your leg muscles from your calves to your thighs. Lift either one or both legs up in the air and hold them there for a few seconds. Lower them to the ground, without letting them touch it and then raise them again and hold once more. Do this for any amount of times you want or just until your legs feel a little jelly like.
Shoulders and arms
The stapler curl
Target: arms, shoulders
If you have to read a long article or passage from a textbook try to do some stapler curls to help keep things interesting. All you have to do is take your trusty stapler and palm facing upward, bring your hand from your thigh and curl it up to your chest just like a normal biceps curl. Switch hands after 12 to 15 reps. If you don’t have a hefty stapler use a heavy water bottle or pencil case as substitutes.
For more deskercises not listed, check out greatist.com and fitnessmagazine.com for more ways to exercise while you study.