Any way you put it, humans were not meant to sit at a desk for 8 hours a day 5 days a week. You can do your best to keep an ergonomic posture, but sooner or later, when you get extra busy, chances are you’ll forget about these best practices and you’ll experience some soreness.
Here are the 5 most common areas affected by desk strain, and some self-massage techniques to help you take some of the tension off.
Hands and Forearms
Ah, the dreaded carpal tunnel syndrome. Any desk jockey is familiar with the unpleasant feeling in your wrist and shooting up your forearm. To alleviate some of the soreness, take a tennis ball and roll it around your desk using your palm and going up your forearm. If you’re experiencing soreness regularly, take care to develop good mouse and keyboard habits to avoid this turning into a full-blown syndrome complete with physical therapy, time away from work, and all the related issues.
If you have a sore neck from slouching in front of your screen all day, take your dominant hand and place your thumb on one side of the neck and your fingers on the other side. Make a gentle rolling motion as you go up and down the neck to relieve some of the tension.
Reach for your back like you’re about to scratch it and grab hold of the muscle at the base of your neck. This is your trapezius muscle and it can get sore if you spend some time with your neck in an unnatural position. Grab your trapezius on each side, and then slowly squeeze your fingers from one end of your hand to the other in a rolling motion. Repeat on the other side.
That tennis ball you used for your hands? It’s just as useful when you’ve got sore feet from sitting down all day. Just take off your shoes, put one foot on the ball, then roll the ball all around the bottom of your foot until you find where the tension is, then focus on that area.
Too many reports giving you a headache? There are many ways to do a head massage, but the easiest is to focus either on your temples or on the points where your jaw meets your face. With a finger on each side, massage in a circular motion for 5 minutes you should experience some relief.
We hope these techniques will help you feel just a bit better during those unavoidable 8 hour stints at your desk!