Stay Healthy While You Sit
By Mary Ann Wilson, RN
Here are some easy Sit and Be Fit arm exercises that work the shoulders, back and fingers. Integrate them into whatever it is you’re already doing right now…especially if you’re stuck at a desk all day. To work more on the arms check out our Chair Exercise Basics DVD which dedicates one whole section to working on flabby arms.
Arm Exercise #1 -work the shoulders by warming up the rotator cuff
- Shoulder Circles: Circle your shoulders slowly—shrug them up toward the ears, back, down, forward and up around again. Circle 2-3 times, ending with shoulders back and down.
- Pendulum Warm-up: Sit tall with your spine straight. Place the left hand on the right thigh for trunk support. Lean to the right side, and allow the right arm to dangle from the shoulder. Move the arm forward and back several times. Initiate the motion from the shoulder. Relax the arm as much as possible and let it move freely. Move the arm in a circle. Reverse the circle.
Arm Exercise #2 – work the back
- Cross and Open: Arms straight, reaching toward the knees, palms down, wrists crossed. Uncross wrists, turn palms up, and bring the hands even with the front of the chair seat. Cross wrists in front again, BUT this time, open and bring the hands even with the middle of the chair seat (palms up). Cross wrists a third time, BUT this time, open and bring hands toward the back of chair, turning palms up as much as possible. Squeeze shoulder blades together.
Arm Exercise #3 – work the fingers
- Opening Flower: Begin with the palm up, the pads of all 4 fingers touching the pad of the thumb. Slowly open the hand 1/2-way, as though it were a bud opening into a flower. Gently close the fingers, then stretch 3/4 open, close, and finally, gently open the hand all the way up. Return to the starting position.