Starting to feel stiff most days? Everyday?
We all know the world is developing in a way that makes it impossible for most people to avoid being sedentary for multiple hours in a day. As we spend all this time in a static position our bodies begin to stiffen and hold onto those bad positions. This is the typical hunched over, shoulders forward, tight hip flexor, achy low back, desk position. We hold stress in our neck, shoulder, and hips. Being uncomfortable for multiple hours a day is a hard way to live when we’re trying to be productive.
But how do you fix this? Get up and stretch every 15-30 minutes? Every hour? That seems like a lot of work and who wants to awkwardly stretch at work? The truth is I really don’t have a good answer for how to fix it. I want to share something I’ve been doing for a few weeks that has been helping me with my day to day stiffness.
Netflix and Flexibility
It’s super simple. After dinner, around 7-8pm, I watch an episode or two of something on Netflix. I started to notice how often I had to adjust the way I was sitting because I would feel stiff in my hips or shoulders. Then I decided to take 5-10 minutes during this time and stretch a few muscles that felt stiff throughout the day. I knew I needed to stretch more but didn’t have the time or motivation to work on my flexibility during the day. But the hardest part was trying to find a reason not to do it.
I knew 10 minutes was completely doable and there was no good reason why I shouldn’t hit the floor and stretch a few tight spots.
After I did this for a few days I began to feel less stiff throughout the day. It didn’t completely go away but I started to see improvement.
Overall I do this about 4-5 times a week for around 10 minutes. I started out just stretching my hamstrings and quads for 1 minute per leg. After a few days I started stretching my shoulders, hips, calves, wrists, and core. I would add a new stretch every other day. Some days I do more and stretch for 15 minutes but most days are around 5-10 minutes.
This concept is nothing new. I’m simply stretching at the end of the day to untie some tight areas. Ask yourself, “do I really not have 10 minutes to try this?” Hit the floor and see what you can do.
The biggest lesson I learned was the benefit of consistency. I do it most days of the week and am seeing slow steady improvement.
Try it out next time you know you’ll be in front of the TV for awhile. A little bit of extra stretching goes a long way.