Hive Health Media

5 Great Exercises To Do In Your Chair While At Work

The sun has made its official debut and spring is finally here. That means spending more time outside, whether it’s planting new flowers in the garden, going for longer strolls with your dog, or walking to work instead of driving. Yes, when the weather changes, so do our day-to-day lives. Whereas a typical Saturday in the winter might be watching television on the couch in your living room, in the summer you might be at the beach, catching rays, and watching the waves.

For a lot of people, though, this can be slightly anxiety inducing because they know that bathing suit season is on the way. Baring it all on the beach is no easy feat, and a lot of people find themselves looking for quick fixes to all of their bodily insecurities. Sadly, no such quick fixes actually exist – no matter what you might see in a commercial or read in an advertisement. Getting in shape requires real lifestyle changes like exercising more and eating healthier foods. But you can also benefit from smaller changes.


If you work in an office, you probably spend a lot of time sitting at your desk. Instead of letting this time go to waste, learn some easy and beneficial exercises that you can do from your office chair. No matter the quality of your office chair, whether it’s a Marcel Breur chair or a hand-me-down, there are things you can do to improve your health while you work. Below are five good ones to get started.

EXERCISE #1 – The Chair Twist

If you are looking for some tension relief, try the chair twist exercise, which will stretch all the muscles in your back. It’s a version of a classic yoga stretch. Start by sitting forward at the front of your chair. Next swivel your legs to the right so that you are sitting in a diagonal position. Now raise your arm towards the ceiling while you inhale, and while exhaling, bring it down to hold onto the back of your chair on the left side. Next put your left hand on your right knee. Inhale and stretch your spine, then exhale as you twist yourself to the right, all the while keeping your shoulder blades tone. Maintain the position for 10 to 15 breaths. Go back to the center position and do the other side.

EXERCISE #2 – Magic Carpet Ride

Sit in your desk chair in a cross-legged position, with your feet resting on the chair’s seat. Grab the armrests firmly and tighten your abdominal muscles. As you do, lift yourself a few inches over the seat, holding yourself up with your arms and using your core for more support. Stay in this position for 10 to 20 seconds. Rest for thirty and then repeat give times. Just be sure that your desk chair’s armrests are strong and able to hold you up.

EXERCISE #3 – Lower Body Exercise

You can even exercise your lower body from your desk chair. Try extending one leg in front of you and holding it there for three seconds. Raise it as high as you can and keep it there for two seconds. Lower it and repeat. Do fifteen reps on each leg.

EXERCISE #4 – Back Exercise

If you have small dumbbells by your desk, that is great, but you can do this exercise without them too. Mark Beier, a personal training manager at Crunch Fitness Center tells you how: “Stand facing your desk chair. Bend at the waist and grab the arms of the chair. Keeping your abs tight, arms slightly bent and your back nice and flat, slowly pick the chair up off the ground.” You should do twenty repetitions of this exercise.

EXERCISE #5 – Exercise Ball

Consider making an investment in an exercise ball, which you can switch with your regular office chair to be in a state of constant exercise. Exercise balls are great for spine alignment because the ball requires balance and good spinal posture gives you better balance automatically.

Elizabeth Rago is a freelance writer specializing in health, wellness, and women’s lifestyle content, working with yoga studios, chiropractors, mental health, and wellness practitioners. Elizabeth writes the weekly column, The Circular Home for Chicago Shopping (an editorial partner of the Chicago Tribune) and is Senior Editor of All Things Girl, highlighting topics related to the modern domestic woman. She has been published in Mamalode Magazine, and

1 Comment

  1. Emma Harris

    May 2, 2013 at 12:49 pm

    Thanks for these tips! Being a mother to two little kids, my hectic schedule has given me no time to go to the gym to workout, something that I was able to do years back. Because of this, I resorted to doing my exercises while working or tending to the children. One change that I’ve recently done is to use stand up desks. Converters like this will quickly and easily transform any traditional desk into a standup desk. And you do not have to spend too much.

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