Working from Home 1920x500

Easy Stretches for Office Workers to Stay Healthy

Whether you are working from your office desk or home office, keeping active whilst working is important, and regular stretches to exercise your muscles can ease work-related pain. Staying in one position all day can soon start to take its toll on your body posture and muscles.

Below, we have brought together many exercises you can perform whilst sitting at your desk to help you stay active during a workday.

Home Laptop Stretch 880x880

Upper Body Chair Stretches

From head tilts to arm stretches, a range of stretches can be done without even moving from your chair. Whether you are in the office or working from home, doing these small stretches regularly can relieve slight pain.

Shoulder Stretch

Simple shoulder stretches can easily be achieved whilst working from your desk. To prevent stiffness in your arms and shoulders, place one hand under your elbow, lift that same elbow, place it across your chest and hold for 30 seconds. This will target and relax the pain in the back of your shoulder. Slowly place your arm down and repeat on the other arm to achieve the same effect.

Another shoulder stretch is the pectoralis stretch. Take both of your arms behind your back and clasp your hands together. Push your chest outwards, tense your arms, and lift your chin upwards for 30 seconds. This will help relieve shoulder and back pain, and help with your body posture.

Head & Neck Tilt

Prevent your head from feeling heavy by doing a range of head and neck exercises. Start by facing your face forward, then slowly turn your head one way but keep your shoulders straight. Hold this stretch for at least 30 seconds, before relaxing your head to the starting position and repeating on the other side.

To achieve the same desired satisfaction but on your neck, face forward and begin to tilt your head so that you’re moving your ear closer to your shoulder. After holding this stretch for 30 seconds, you’ll begin to feel some tension, relax your head to its original position and repeat this stretch on the other side.

Tricep Stretches

To relieve pain within your triceps, raise one arm behind your head and place it on your upper back. Use your other hand to reach for your elbow and pull it towards your head. Gently pull and hold for at least 30 seconds. Relax your arm and repeat the same on the opposite arm.

Torso Stretch

To help with back pain, keep your feet on the ground and face forward. Rest your arm on the back of your chair and bring your body slightly forward to the edge of the chair. Twist your upper body in the same direction as your arm resting on the back of the chair. Like with all stretches, it’s important to concentrate on your breathing when completing this stretch as it will help you lean into the stretch much easier.

Thoracic Spine Rotation

A more advanced seated exercise is a thoracic spine rotation. To achieve this pose you will need to be seated with your feet close together, bend from your waist towards your feet and place one hand in between your legs, touching the foot. Slowly rotate your body, opening your chest and allowing your other arm to reach for the ceiling. Maintain this position for 30 seconds before performing the same on the opposite side.

BRITA bottle on a desk
Stretching Yoga Home 880x880

Lower Body Chair Stretches

Stretching the lower body as well as the upper body whilst working from your desk is just as important. Taking regular breaks to move your lower body muscles including your hips and hamstrings can make all the difference to maintaining good body posture whilst at your desk.

Hamstring Stretches

For this pose, you will need to position yourself near the edge of the chair with one leg straight out in front of you. Reach down towards your toes and feel the tension release slightly before elevating back to your starting position. Doing this exercise one leg at a time is important to prevent any further back issues.

Hip & Knee Stretches

For the ultimate leg stretch experience whilst working, lean back on your chair, elongate your legs outwards and lift one knee towards your chest in a hugging position. Hold this pose for 30 seconds before releasing and repeating it on the other leg.

Ankles Rolls

This simple exercise can be done very regularly to help with your body’s blood circulation. Staying seated, lift one leg up at a time and slowly rotate your ankle up and down. Make sure to rotate your ankle both clockwise and anticlockwise to achieve the most movement and target all your ankle muscles.

Exercise & Hydration Balance

Hydration is an important key to keeping balanced when exercising, even if it is from your office chair. Regularly consuming water throughout your working day improves your mental performance, concentration, and combats tiredness. BRITA has a wide range of reusable water bottles suitable for hot and cold drinks, our freestanding and countertop water dispensers. Easy controls allow you to keep hydrated within the workplace with no hassle.

Discover office water dispensers.

Related content


Unlock the power of workplace wellbeing!

BRITA's latest Refill Your Cup campaign aims to uncover what makes office workers tick; what helps their mental wellbeing, their motivation, and the importance that workplace culture has on their working lives.

Working Desk (880x880)

How to Improve Well-being at Work

Here are ten mouth-watering healthy work snack ideas that are not only healthy but also packed with essential nutrients to keep you energised throughout the day.

Office Web Default (880x880)

Benefits of Having Water Dispensers in an Office

Providing freshly chilled water to your employees is a major health and social benefit within the workplace.