Whether you’re in the office or working from home, taking microbreaks throughout the work day is one of the most important things you can do to prevent the typical problems associated with hunching over a desk for hours.
We recommend taking a 2 minute microbreak every thirty minutes or so— at most we recommend 2 of these breaks every 90 minutes.
These microbreaks are a chance to get up and activate your back, neck and shoulder muscles that are typically sedentary while we work. Without them you risk developing pain and stiffness in these areas, which is no fun at all.
Luckily, we’ve put together a list of things you can do to make your WFH microbreak routine fun and easy! Check out the list below, and create your own routine of activities that keep you moving!
Get a glass of water, tea or coffee
Stay hydrated people! Rather than getting a massive water bottle filled up next to you, try using a smaller glass that forces you to get up and walk to the sink every now and then. Simply walking between your desk and the faucet is a good break for your body. Check out our favorite tea brand, The Republic of Tea. Remember though— don’t overdo it with caffeine in the late afternoon!
Water your plants
Plants are keeping us sane during these strange times. Try setting up a schedule where you water a different plant every time you need to take a microbreak. This activity will certainly help you soothe your body and mind at the same time.
Get a healthy snack
Walk to the kitchen and grab a small treat for yourself. Don’t fill up a massive bowl of pretzels, but try snagging a tiny handful of nuts instead. Repeat as necessary. We love this list of ideas from Taste of Home.
Do some simple stretches
Microbreaks are a great time to get a quick stretch in. These simple stretches will reinvigorate you, and are targeted at the muscle groups that tend to gather tension while we work at a desk. Do one of them for each microbreak, and be amazed at how much better you feel.
1. Full Squats (10 repetitions)
Begin standing with feet shoulder width apart. Raise arms to shoulder level for balance. Sit hips back, and downward, until thigh is almost parallel to floor. Maintain a flat and straight spine. Knee should maintain alignment with second toe and not glide past foot. Return to start position. Repeat for prescribed repetitions and sets.
2. Seated Scapular Retraction Arms Low
Begin by sitting upright in chair with arms extended at sides. While maintaining good upright posture, squeeze shoulder blades together. Pause and return to start position. Repeat for prescribed repetitions and sets.
3. Quadruped Trunk Rotation
Begin on your hands and knees with your head and back in a straight position. Hands should be under your shoulders, hips directly above knees. Activate core muscles. Rotate upper body, extending arm upward. Knees should remain in contact with floor during entire movement. Try to maintain a straight spine, avoiding excessive rounding or arching of the low back. Slowly return to start position. Repeat for prescribed repetitions and sets.
As a bonus— check out our article on morning stretches you can do to replace the physical exercise of the morning commute!
We hope these ideas get you moving more and feeling better during these trying times. For more tips on how to stay in shape when you’re hanging around the house, check out our other blog posts here!