Updated: Jan 28, 2021
There’s a good chance you’re reading this from the comfort of your own home. Perhaps you’re sitting at your dining room table, or you’re propped up between the cushions on the sofa. Wherever you find yourself, if you’re anything like me, your health and fitness habits have been altered thanks to another lockdown.
Sneaking a Read of The Metro on the Tube
It was only this week I noticed an interesting piece of research from Sophie Cheng on Legal Cheek, suggesting working hours in the legal industry have increased, despite the shift to home working! American lawyer Paul Hodkinson goes as far to suggest that the pandemic will cause a permanent shift in the workings of the legal industry.
While there are certainly perks to WFH life (the lack of queues, no more reading The Metro over somebody’s shoulder on a packed tube!) there’s things we miss too - like calling in at the local gym after work to destress after a busy day.
Work from Home Fitness
So with all these changes, how can you ensure your health and fitness remains a priority? Not only physically - mental health is just as important and regaining control of your fitness routine can help no end.
A balance must be struck. We’ve all seen the pictures of the empty streets and offices around Temple tube station. Gyms in the area are exactly the same.
To kick off the new year and encourage you to take regular steps to restructure your health and wellbeing. Always consult your GP/physician before beginning any exercise program. The following information is not intended to diagnose any medical condition or to replace your healthcare professional. If you experience any pain or difficulty with exercise, stop immediately and consult your healthcare provider. Here are your five simple ‘work from home’ stretches tailored for busy legal professionals.
Five Simple ‘Work From Home’ Stretches
How to do it:
In a standing position, cross one foot in front and beside the other.
Slowly fold at the hips forward.
Use the desk, or grab onto your legs to steady yourself, while holding for 15-20 seconds.
Slowly raise back up and switch legs.
How to do it:
Adapted from the yoga pose on the floor - Standing at your desk, or a similar raised surface (eg back of the sofa), lift your leg up and lay the lower part across in front of you.
Ensure that you are standing upright and if possible allow the bent knee to lower itself down. Use a hand to steady it if tight or too intense.
After carefully holding for 15-20 seconds, gently step back from the desk allowing the leg to slowly ease off. Switch sides and repeat on the other leg.
Simple calf stretches
How to do it:
Easily the stretch most people could improve on in one quick second! Begin by leaning against a solid surface, like a wall or doorframe with both hands outstretched in front of you.
In a staggered stance, with one foot in front of the other, imagine your feet are on narrow train tracks. This is the part most people miss, so make sure you turn your toes in slightly to maximise the stretch.
To swap, make sure you drag the front foot back to be in line with the rear first. Then bring the rear foot forward. You’ll performt the stretch the same distance apart at the feet.
Neck tension release
How to do it:
Ideal for anyone that’s been at a desk all day. Ensure you’re sitting upright when performing this.
Look straight ahead
Using your left arm raised above and over your head, grab your right ear.
Using this hand tilt your head towards your left shoulder.
Use your right hand to point to the floor and feel the stretch in the right side of the neck.
Holding for 15-20 seconds without trying to pull too hard, then switch.
A Safe Upper & Lower Back Chair Stretch
How to do it:
With your feet flat on the ground in your chair, adjust yourself so you’re sitting upright and against the back of the chair.
Bring both hands up behind your head and interlock your fingers.
Then collapse forward starting at the chin and then rolling your spine down, so your head is heading for your knees. (Might be a good idea to push your chair away from the desk first, you don’t want to headbutt it!)
Take a deep breath in, and then an even breath out (preferably though the nose). As you exhale, come up.
When you’re at the starting position, see if you can continue back in the chair with your hands at the back of your head still but leaning back so you’re looking at the ceiling. TO do this safely, keep your lower and as much of your back against the chair as possible.
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Make sure January 2021 is the month you lead with your health and fitness.
Until next time,