Workplace Stretches

Stretch Guidelines

  • Stretching should feel tolerably uncomfortable

  • Avoid stretching too far when pain or headache increases. Be aware of posture

  • Deep breath to assist relaxation

  • It should not cause tingling that lasts longer than 30 seconds. If so, reduce the stretch motion

Posture … Are you lengthening your torso?

When sitting, standing, walking lift your torso through to your head, without arching low back or pressing chest out. You will feel longer and breath easier.

Head & Neck posture

Neck/Head: Gently retract your head backward slightly. Overdoing will feel forced and may initiate a headache. 
Shoulders: Relax them down from your ears. Squeeze blades together for 5 seconds then relax to a comfortable position.
Pelvis: Use lower abdominal muscles. Pull up, gently, from the pelvis/lower abdominal area like pulling up a zipper.

If you have difficulty maintaining these postures, try holding for 30 seconds only.
Do 3 reps, several times a day to teach muscle control. Gradually increase the time. Keep at it!

Neck Rotations

** Correct your head posture as shown above.  Sit/stand up tall and gently pull shoulders back.
Turn head right and take a deep breath in and fully out.  Turn head left and repeat the breath.  

  • Do 3 times each direction

Neck Side Bends

** Correct your head posture.  Sit/stand up tall and gently pull shoulders back. Tilt head to the right.   Hold for 15 seconds and take a deep breath in and fully out. Return head up and repeat to the left with the breath.

  • Do 3 times each direction


** Correct your head posture.  Stand up tall.  Place fingers behind head and elbows pulled back, squeeze shoulder blades together.  Lift chin as comfortable.  Hold for 10 seconds and breath in and fully out.

  • Do 10 times

Rotator Cuff

Stand up tall.  Reach one hand behind neck and the other up back.  Try to touch your fingers together.   Hold 15 seconds and take a deep breath in and fully out.   Switch arms.

  • Do 3 times per side

Forearms/Elbows – Golfers & Tennis Elbow

Place the fingers of one hand below the wrist of the other hand.  *** Keep a straight elbow *** Hold 30 seconds.    Now pull the fingers up, on the straight arm. *** Keep a straight elbow *** Hold 30 seconds

  • Do 2-3 times for each position on both arms.

Hamstrings and Calf

Hold abdominals in. Place foot on chair. *** Keep torso up long. Flex toes up and knee straight, as able.   Bend the weight bearing knee to your comfort.  Use a wall for balance, if needed.  Hold for 30 seconds.  Repeat on other leg.

  • Do 3 times each leg

Core Strengthening

These exercises here are chosen based on credible bio-mechanical research for safety and effectiveness. ALWAYS use proper form. If you are too fatigued and loose form, move to a different exercise. Always breathe fully in and out, as you move. Read the instructions carefully. Have fun!!!

TIP: For more difficult movements, a strong exhale will further engage core muscles.


Begin on hands and knees. Pull lower abdominals in tightly. Press palms firmly into floor and maintain. Slide each leg back. Press heels away and squeeze buttocks. Try to keep your body a straight line. *** Breath out forcefully to help lower abdominal tightness and support low back. Hold for as many breaths as you can using good form

Bridge Series

Before hip lifting, press heels FIRMLY into floor each time. Begin each lift without rocking your pelvis.  Visualize lifting hips up NOT tummy up.  Hold this for up to 15 seconds. Lower your hips.  

  • Do 10-15 times

    Progression:  knee lift With hips up, press one heel FIRMLY into floor. Then lift the other knee toward you WITHOUT pelvis rocking. Hold 2-5 seconds and return foot down.  Repeat on the other side with a firm heel press.  Work up to 10 knee lifts per side. Try this without your arms on the floor!

Modification:  elbows assisted 1. To control pelvis and reduce low back strain, bend elbows at sides and press them FIRMLY into floor before each knee lift (along with firm heel press). 2. Visualize and focus lifting from hips without pressing up tummy. Reduce lift height if low back pain increases at top of lift.

Side Plank

Begin sitting on floor on left hip and left palm. Lift hip off floor and straighten right leg. Press right heel FIRMLY away and maintain. Now press left palm FIRMLY into floor and maintain as you REACH upward with right arm. Try to keep your body a straight line. Avoid pelvis sagging slightly toward floor. *** Breath out forcefully to help lower abdominal tightness and support low back. Hold for as many breaths as you can using good form. Progression: Double straight legs 1. While up in position, slide left heel back to straighten that knee. The left foot can be in front or behind the right. Do not stack the feet (reduced stability). Hold up to 30 seconds, 3 times per side 2. In the initial position, lift straight leg while FIRMLY pressing heel away and slightly behind body. Press bent knee FIRMLY into floor. Hold leg with heel pressing 5 seconds, up to 10 times per side.

Bird Dog

On all fours with hands under shoulders and knees under hips.   Back should be flat.  Move SLOWLY with balance and control of form.  Reach right arm forward and PRESS left palm FIRMLY into the floor.  Now press left heel FIRMLY back to straighten and lift leg. Hold for 10 seconds. Repeat on other side. 

  • Work up to 10 times per side

Progression:  Knee to elbow With arm and leg extended, maintain balance and control. SLOWLY move your elbow and opposite knee toward each other.  They don’t have to touch.  TIP: press weight bearing palm FIRMLY into floor. Reach hand forward again and press heel back firmly. Do 3 times per side.  Work up to 10 times per side

Modification: leg lift only Press both palms FIRMLY into floor first. Press one heel FIRMLY back to straighten and lift leg.
Hold 10 seconds, work up to 10 times per side

Mountain Climber

Begin in the basic plank position with palms pressing firmly. *** Ensure body line is straight and steady during movement. *** Before lifting right knee forward, FIRMLY press and hold left heel back. Now bring right knee toward arms. Hold 1 second Repeat on the other leg Work up to 10 times per leg

Hip and Knee Osteoarthritis Exercises

Foam Rolling

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