Moving about sufficiently while at work is vital for health and wellbeing. It has a positive effect on, for example, your ability to concentrate, your immune system, your metabolism and your circulation. These are more than enough reasons to move more during the working day, particularly if you usually spend most of it sitting down. We have collected some ideas to get you moving about at work.
1. Change frequently between sitting and standing
It doesn’t matter if you are sitting or standing, maintaining the same position over a long time will lead to stiffness. It would be better for your body if you change position three or four times every hour. From sitting to standing or walking and back again. The more often you do that, the better. You should never spend more than 40 minutes in the same position.
2. Take exercise breaks
Make sure you include exercise breaks in your work routine. It is best to listen to your body. When it sends you signals such as tingling in your back or in feet and hands then it’s time to move. Don’t ignore your inner voice urging you to get up and move about.
3. Active workplace
Arrange your desk or your working surroundings so that you have no other choice but to move about. Ensure that your water bottle, snacks or the bin are set far away from your desk. Things that you frequently need for work, e.g. a shelf or certain folders should be kept out of immediate reach so that you are forced to get up to get them. In other words: Don’t get too comfortable at work.
4. Drink plenty of fluids
Staying hydrated is very important for mind and body. Ensure that you are focused and productive by remembering to drink regularly throughout the day. Another practical side effect is worth mentioning: You’ll be forced to get up and go to the toilet more often.
5. Walk and talk
Everyone makes business calls during the working day. Take the opportunity to get up and walk around while you are talking. The movement will relax you and increase your confidence, and this will come across in your voice. Moving about also wakes you up. As a pay-off you can look forward to having new ideas, overcoming creative blocks and getting some needed exercise.
6. Hold meetings on the go
Holding meetings on the go or standing up changes the mood of the team and can have a positive effect on the atmosphere in the group. Try to persuade your colleagues to hold meetings in this way and see what effect it has on your productivity.
7. Relaxation exercises
Tense neck muscles, for example, can be very unpleasant. During a hectic working day, you can avoid discomfort by doing some gentle stretches: Slowly turn your head to the right and left or raise your arms slowly above your head. You can also stretch your wrists by making a fist with your hand and rolling it in a circular motion.
8. Park your car a few streets away from the office
If you drive to work, you shouldn’t park in the company car park but leave your car a little further away and walk the rest of the way to work. You can do the same if you take the bus or train to work by simply getting off a stop early and walking the rest. This will wake you up before a long day.
9. Take the stairs instead of the lift
Instead of taking the lift up to your office, take the stairs to get your blood pumping. Think of it as a workout for your bottom and thighs.
10. Cycle to work
Cycling, particularly when the weather is nice, can be very enjoyable indeed. It is even nicer when you can sail past the rush hour traffic jams and avoid the stress of crowded roads. Like walking, cycling gets your blood circulating and improves your endurance.
11. Go for a walk with colleagues
The introduction of new rituals works best when you do it as part of a group in which colleagues can encourage each other. Arrange to take breaks together in which you agree to be active. To keep fit, it would be a good idea to go for a regular walk together. These breaks should serve as a distraction to clear your head and relax your body.
12. Use activity reminders
If you don’t have a group at work to motivate you, you can use reminders instead. The important thing is to stay on the ball and regularly do something for your body.
13. Stand on public transport
If you go to work by public transport, you shouldn’t feel obliged to sit down all the way. Try standing instead and training your sense of balance. Depending on whether it is a tram or a bus, that can be a challenge in itself during rush hour.
14. Use a standing desk
If you have a standing desk at work, you should try standing. Your body will immediately notice the difference. Ideally, you should have a height-adjustable desk so that you can change your position from sitting to standing and vice versa. Make sure you take advantage of this opportunity.