5 easy stretching exercises to reduce pain and avoid injuries

Sitting for long hours, whether at work or at home idling, can cause pain in several parts of the body, especially the back, neck, elbows and shoulder. This pain, over a period of time, can lead to serious medical complications.

So you might wannna get up and stretch a bit and relieve yourself of the stiffness.

“Some simple stretches done at the workplace can prevent long-term harm to the body,” assures Arushi Verma, who is the co-founder of FitPass, which is based in New Delhi.

Here are five simple stretches, which when done on a regular basis, can protect your body from various kinds of injuries and pains.

Shoulder shrug

How to do it:

Inhaling deeply, shrug your shoulders and lift them high up to your ears.

Hold for a second and release.

Try three repetitions.

You can also move your head up and down and sideways.

Benefits: This helps in easing the stress which has built up in your shoulder area and helps loosen the muscles there.

Latissimus stretch

This stretch is also called the overhead reach.

How to do it:

Start by extending each arm overhead and reach to the opposite side.

Stay in this position for about 30 seconds.

Then repeat with the other side.

Benefits: This is good for your arms and shoulders and helps in improving mobility.

Forward stretch

This is also called the rhomboid upper or upper back stretch.

How to do it:

Clasping your hands in front of you, lower your head in line with the arms.

Press forward and hold for 10 to 30 seconds.

Do about three repetitions.

Benefits: “This helps in easing back pain and helps stretch your back,” says Verma.

Medical upper stretch

How to do it:

Shruti Bangera, Delhi-based senior SME, physiotherapy, for the medical app Portea Medical, tells us how to go about this stretching exercise.

Start by gently pulling your head toward each shoulder until you feel a light stretch.

Stay in this position for about 10 to 15 seconds.

Alternate once on each side.

Benefits: This is a good exercise for your shoulders.

Neck stretch

How to do it:

Begin by relaxing and leaning your head forward.

Now roll your head slowly toward one side and hold for 10 seconds.

Repeat this on the other side.

Relax again and lift your chin back to starting position.

Benefits: This helps in relaxing your neck muscles and in easing tension from that area which has built up over the day.

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