Posted on August 25. 2015
Health & Lifestyle
Here comes the second round of exercises by our Varier Ambassador Coach Eddie, this time featuring the Move stool.
“Enjoy the freedom of active sitting with Edward ‘Coach Eddie’ Bergersen, a personal trainer and movement therapist based in Geneva, Switzerland. Coach Eddie has tailored a set of exercises for your chair that are easy to perform during short breaks in your busy day“
This exercise stretches the rotator cuff, the deep muscles of the shoulder joint. These muscles need to be strong in order for the ‘prime movers’ of the shoulder (the big superficial muscles that younger guys love to train) to function properly.
What to do:
Place your closed fists on your hips and puff out your chest. Without collapsing your chest, try to bring your elbows together. You’ll feel a deep stretch in your shoulders. Bring your elbows back and forearms in towards your body and ‘open up’ your arms, squeezing your shoulder blades together. Alternate between both positions so it looks like you’re ‘flying’ with your elbows.
Therapists and coaches call the shoulder the ‘mischievous younger brother’ of the hip. And just like the shoulder, the hip can also act up. This exercise targets the deep stabilisers, or ‘rotator cuff’ of the hip.
What to do:
Lower the seat until your hips are at a 90° angle to your upper legs. With your back straight, place one ankle on the opposite knee. Push your knee gently down until you feel a stretch in the hip. With your back straight, bend slightly forward to increase the stretch. Hold for 20 seconds, then repeat on the other side.
To stretch the opposing group of hip rotators, place your feet wider than shoulder width apart, then bring your knees together, and hold for 20 seconds.
Note: if you experience any knee pain during this exercise, either skip it, or reduce the intensity of the stretch.
When we type or write, our wrist extensors (the muscles that lift the hand) are constantly contracted and the flexors (the muscles that bend the wrist) are constantly stretched. This can lead to conditions like mouse arm, or carpal tunnel syndrome.
If you’ve had one or both of these, no explanation is needed. If you haven’t, trust me, you don’t want to know.
What to do:
Stand behind the chair. Grip the chair with one hand to stabilise it, and place the other hand flat, with your fingers pointing back toward you. Gently straighten your elbow to stretch your forearm. Then slowly bend your forearm and ‘peel’ your palm off the chair. Repeat five times on each wrist.
An office version of a timeless classic, the plank activates the stabilising muscles of your midsection, which unfortunately weakens when you sit for long periods. To activate your deep shoulder muscles, keep your arms straight.
What to do:
Stand behind your chair and lower the seat until it’s about halfway down your thigh. Place your hands on the seat like you’re holding a steering wheel. Step backwards until your body is in a rigid plank position, and you feel your arms and core contract. To up the action, tilt your pelvis backward,
and tuck your imaginary tail between your legs. Hold for 30-60 seconds. Ready for more? Tilt the chair so it balances on the edge of the base.
Note: only try the tilted chair version if you can hold the normal version for at least one minute.
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