back exercises do office table ease lower back pain EMBED

1. Cross-body stretch

Sit upright, then cross your right leg over your left leg. Press your arm against the crossed leg and twist your body slowly to the right. Hold for five seconds. Repeat on your left. Repeat three times.

2. Backward reach

Sit upright and raise your right arm, letting your hand hang behind your head in an inverted V-shape. Stretch your left arm behind your back and try to grasp the fingers of your right arm while gently pushing your shoulder blades together. Hold for three seconds. Repeat on the other side, then redo it three times.


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3. Sideways stretch

Sit upright and reach your right hand over your head towards the ceiling. Gently, reach your hand towards the left to stretch the right side of your torso. Hold for five seconds. Repeat on the left. Do this three times.

4. Forward bend

Sit with your legs wider than shoulder-width apart, feet flat on the floor. Holding your spine straight, breathe out and bend forward. Let your arms hang loose. Breathe in while returning to your seated position. Repeat five times.  

5. Shoulder blade squeeze

Sit upright and pull your shoulder blades together. Hold for three seconds then relax. Repeat five times.


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Focus Pilates’ physiotherapist, Cerise Li, says you can try these two other moves too.

6. Thoracic rotation

Sit upright and place both palms at the back of your neck with elbows pointed to the sides. Rotate your torso to the left with your shoulder blades gently drawn downwards. Turn to your right. Repeat five times.

7. Seated cat and camel stretches

Sit at the edge of a chair and bend and flex your spine.  Repeat five times. This eases mid- and lower-back tension.