We are over six months into shutdowns due to COVID-19 and, especially here in California, there doesn't seem to be an end in sight. With that being said, many Californians and Americans are still working from home and will remain working at home for quite some time. Being sedentary is really taking its toll on our bodies and I have noticed a significant breakdown in my patients.
I've been writing to help the community since the beginning and what I have come to find is that many of us have unhappy spines, feet, hips, shoulders and necks. So I'm listing the best exercises that everyone working from home should implement in their routine!
While many of you are not moving enough, your feet are slowly getting stiffer. Our feet have become like cinderblocks and basically forgotten how to move. Watch the video above and give this exercise a try. It will help you improve your push-off while you are walking. Another contributing factor is wearing flip flops. So try to limit your flip flop and house slipper time!
Hip Capsule Stretch
Shakira said the hips don't lie and boy is she right! With all of this sitting time courtesy of back to back Zoom calls with zero breaks, most people are standing with their hips in a more flexed position. And don't even get me started on poor workstations.
Taking care of your hips will do wonders for your lower back as well. So scrap those back stretches and try working on your hips first!
This is a continuation of the hip capsule stretch. You always want to make room in the joint first and then work on the actual muscle tension. In the previous blog, I talked about the importance of moving every 30-40 minutes. But if that's not possible due to the nature of your work, you should definitely implement this stretch two to three times per day for about 30 seconds on each leg! Your body will thank you for it!
Setting your shoulder girdle on your rib cage sets the table for a good healthy axis of rotation for a synergy between the three important bones of your shoulder: the clavicle (collar bone), scapula (shoulder blade), and the actual shoulder bone of your arm. This collarbone stabilization exercise is just the ticket!
Cervical Impact Test
After all of these other exercises, it's time to work on that apex of the temple that is your body. Our head is interestingly offset more forward. However, it was never meant to stare at our screens for long durations of time. Why do we do this to ourselves??? Regain neck stability with this very simple exercise!
So there you have it. The sheer fact that we are moving less and sitting more will always keep R+ and other pain practitioners in business because it is just so hard on the body. But doing these exercises will most definitely increase your longevity and endurance.
Until next time, heal smarter, not harder!
Dr. Justin C. Lin