Series: Working From Home

17 Desk Exercises While Working From Home

Posted on May 29, 2020

Whether you’re a graphic designer, a writer, or a financial guru, working from home comes with freedom—and a whole lot of discipline.

If you’re nervous about wasting the day away in front of the computer screen with poor posture and a lack of motivation to exercise, we hear you. Keep yourself in shape with some simple (yet effective) workouts.

From wall sits to bicycle crunches, here are our top 17 desk exercises to try. We promise, they’ll leave you feeling energized, revitalized, and ready for the workday ahead.

1. Free Weights

Sometimes you need your hands and fingers to type, take notes, and do other work-related tasks. But for times when you don’t, there are always free weights. Try something small—like some 5-pound dumbbells to use when you’re brainstorming and need to generate some creative energy. With free weights, daily repetition will help you grow stronger. Start using them when you’re seated at your desk or pacing around the living room on a conference call. If you don’t have free weights on hand, that’s okay. Two full water bottles will do the trick.

2. Simple Lunges

One of the easiest stand up desk exercises you can do is a series of simple lunges. You probably already know the drill, but with one leg in front of the other, lower the knee of your back leg toward the ground. You can do this in place at your desk or do lunges down the hall as you head to the kitchen for a snack.

3. Wall Sits

Although wall sits might bring you back to memories of middle school gym class, they’re a great home office exercise to put on your roster. Any time work makes you feel stressed or anxious, just find a wall and slide your back down it until your knees and hips are at the same level. Sitting in this 90-degree angle will burn after a while, but after some daily repetition, you’ll be a wall-sitting pro. The most daring of remote workers might even try to balance a laptop on their knees while they do so—but this is for the advanced sitters in the crowd.

4. Arm Pulses

For stand up desk exercises that give your shoulders a much-needed stretch and work your triceps, try some arm pulses. Hold both your arms up in the air (to make a T-shape with your body) with both your palms facing towards the floor, then keep your arms flat as you pulse them up and down.

5. Bicycle Crunches

Those in search of desk exercises for abs will be happy to know that you can do your bicycle crunches from the comfort of your office chair. In traditional bicycle crunches, you lay flat on the ground, put your hands behind your head, and lift one elbow to the opposite knee as you twist. Doing this from a seated position looks the same—just start with your feet on the floor instead.

6. Seated Leg Raises

If you’re looking for desk exercises you can do while seated, seated leg raises are a good go-to. From your desk chair, sit tall and stretch your legs out in front of you. Raise them, then lower and repeat. Keep your back straight and to engage your shins and ankles, keep the foot flexed.

7. Torso Twist

A good old fashioned torso twist can be done anytime you need a stretch. These desk exercises for abs can easily be done while you’re typing or on the phone with a client. All you have to do is twist your torso to the left, twist your torso to the right, and then repeat.

8. Jog In-Place

Although nothing beats a walk or a jog in the fresh air, jogging or walking in place can easily be done from the comfort of your home office. Start by walking or jogging in place for a little bit every hour. You can choose how long you want to move and how intense your workout is. Once you get used to your normal pace, you can increase the intensity and burn some more calories.

9. Elevated Pushups

When you’re working remotely, desk exercises are fun things to do at home that make the time pass. Cure your conference call boredom with some elevated pushups. Simply stand up, lean against your desk, and push your body away from the desk. Do ten, pause, and repeat.

10. Arm Circles

When it comes to seated or standing desk exercises, arm circles are as easy as it gets. Simply sit or stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Extend your arms out so that they are parallel with the floor. Using small motions, move your arms in circles. Allow the circles to gradually get bigger, until you feel the stretch in your tricep. Then, do your circles in the other direction.

11. Full Body Stretches

One of the most critical work from home tips we can give is to stretch. When you’re in a seated position for prolonged periods, it can be tough on the body. If you have a job where you type constantly, stretch your wrists. Make a fist then spread and bend your fingers. Get up and touch your toes to relieve your back. Lift your arms above your head and reach up to the ceiling. Grab each foot and give it a stretch behind your leg, as if you were gearing up for a jog.

12. Squeeze Your Abdominal Muscles

The good thing about the ab squeeze is that it’s one of the most silent desk exercises for abs. All you have to do is take a deep breath, tighten your ab muscles, then exhale. Keep them squeezed for 10 seconds then release. Repeat these ab squeezes whenever you need a good, silent workout.

13. Chair Squats

Anytime you have a spare moment in between a call or an assignment, throw in a round of chair squats. There’s not much to them, other than standing up, moving away from your chair slightly, and squatting. Keep your weight in your heels and lower your body down — when you feel as though you almost can sit back down, don’t! Instead, push through your heels to stand up, and repeat the squat.

14. Jump Rope

Jump rope is one of our favorite desk exercises for two reasons. If you have a jump rope on hand, you can do it—and if you don’t have a jump rope on hand, you can also do it. Use your invisible jump rope in your office and pretend to jump with it, moving your legs and arms as you do so. For a more intense workout, make the invisible jump rope go faster. You can do this while you watch a work video online, or simply to get some energy out in between calls. If you’re learning how to work from home with kids, this is an exercise that litt le ones will love, too.

15. Calf Raises

Calf raises are one of the easiest stand up desk exercises—and they’ll keep your calves strong (even when you aren’t hitting the gym). Just stand in front of your desk, hold on for balance if you need to, and slowly raise your calves up and down.

16. Tricep Dips

One of the most popular desk exercises are tricep dips. Make sure your chair is sturdy, plant your feet on the ground, put your arms behind your back to rest on your chair, and slowly lower and raise your body. It’s a simple exercise, but it’s a good one.

17. Stand Up

Though not exactly a specific exercise, standing up is as important as any other of our mentioned desk exercises and helps adjust your posture. If your work requires you to be on the phone, stand instead of prolonged sitting. Move around a bit. Walk to the kitchen and make yourself a mug of tea. Come up with some fun and healthy home lunch ideas you can prep or heat up during your phone call. Working from home is all about adding variation to the day and keeping things interesting. A main component of that is to always remember—keep moving.

From tricep dips to pretend jump rope, once you get into your at-home desk exercise routine, you’ll be feeling happy, healthy, and ready to take on whatever the workday throws your way.

When you’re working in another city and in need of a home-away-from-home to do your desk exercises, get your work done, and settle in, Zeus is here for you.

From lightning-fast Wifi to thoughtful design touches, our long-term rentals are created with the remote worker (and desk exerciser) in mind. Just browse, book, and let us take care of the rest.

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