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Safe and sound with the MonKey Desk– Corpus Motum shows you how to work at a standing desk

You own a standing desk? Then read the following article carefully! Physiotherapist Patrik Ruhdorfer of Corpus Motum helps you with your problems in the office. Back pain, neck tension, etc. will soon be a thing of the past.

From sitting to standing

Headlines such as "Sitting is the new smoking" and painful back pain or neck tension have probably played their part in buying a standing desk. We at Corpus Motum prepare you for the office work in a standing position.

What you should not do is starting to work standing for 8 hours from one moment to the other. Your body isn't (yet) prepared for this, that's why we're making you fit for it now!

How should you work at a standing desk?

The best way to work is to switch between sitting and standing. That way you stay most productive and your body doesn't have to spend the whole day in the same rigid position.

Either set fixed times when you want to work standing up or consider which tasks you prefer to do standing up (e.g. creative work, making phone calls, answering e-mails). With this in mind, nothing can go wrong!

Why do you first have to prepare your body to work standing up?

You've been sitting most of the day since you were 6 years old (= entering school). Your body has gotten used to this position. Your muscles have shortened and become correspondingly weaker. Examples for this are a shortened hip flexor, glued chest muscles or weak abdominal muscles. Through targeted strengthening and mobilization exercises in the office, you create a counter-movement for your body - this is like balm on your soul.

3 exercises at the MonKey Desk

We have put together three exercises for you, which are ideal for the start and prepare you for working standing up. You can find more exercises in the booklet, which we created together with the team of ROOM IN A BOX and which you can download for free.

Exercise 1: Stretching the hip flexor

As you've heard, your hip flexor has been shortening properly in the last few years. That is why we dedicate ourselves to him in the first exercise:

Exercise description:

  • Basic position:
    • Stand hip-width (not shoulder-width)
    • The toes look forward
    • Build up tension by pushing your heels outwards (like skiing in a snow plough)
    • The knees are rather loose and not overstretched
    • Shift the body weight rather on the heels
    • Important: Tighten the lower abdomen by pulling the navel towards the spine!
    • Slightly pull the shoulder blades back down and straighten up the thoracic spine (Attention: Do not build up too much tension, allow your body to get used)
    • This posture is uncomfortable at first. But it changes everything.
  • Now put one leg back (step position)
  • The entire rear foot is and remains on the ground, the rear leg is stretched out.
  • Get your lumbar spine out of the hollow back (pull your navel inwards)
  • Slide your pelvis forward until it starts to pull in the groin
  • If necessary, stabilize at the MonKey Desk
  • Breathe deeply and evenly throughout the exercise
  • Hold for 20-30 seconds, loosen and change sides 


Exercise 2: Squats

Why should you do this exercise? The squats not only help you to gain more body tension (which in turn helps you with neck pain and reduces lumbar spine problems), but also improve your metabolism and make you really fit and vital!

Exercise description:

  • Start in the basic position (hip-width position, toes facing forward, heels out, knees loose, shifting your body weight to the heels, abdomen tightened and shoulder blades pulled back down)
  • From this basic position you move your buttocks backwards as if you were sitting down (maybe you remember the Italian toilets from your bathing holiday - this is exactly the posture you take)
  • The hands remain at the MonKey Desk, with the edges of the hands resting on the desk to maintain balance.
  • By pressing on the desk, the back upper arm muscles and the wide back muscle are tensed up.
  • With building up even more tension on your support, you feel your whole body better
  • Keep the abdominal tension
  • Keep breathing calmly and evenly
  • Return to the basic position

Repeat the exercise 5 times! Hold the position for 10 seconds and pause for 10 seconds. Try to install the repetitions three times a day. That's doable, right?! 


Exercise 3: Russian Twist

The Russian Twist sounds dangerous, but you won't want to miss it in the future! This exercise provides a strong midbody.

Exercise description:

  • Start in the basic position (hip-width position, toes facing forward, heels out, knees loose, shifting your body weight to the heels, abdomen tightened and shoulder blades pulled back down)
  • The spine is upright
  • Stretch your arms forward.
  • Squeeze your palms together in front of your body
  • Build up abdominal tension
  • Now slowly turn your upper body to the left while constantly keeping the abdominal tension (perform the exercise in a controlled manner)
  • If you can no longer rotate your upper body, stay in position for a moment. Now turn slowly and controlled to the right side
  • Shortly hold the position again
  • Breathe in and out evenly throughout the exercise

Do a total of 3x 8 repetitions of the exercise. Between sets you take a 20 second break and loosen up.

With this exercise you can mobilize your upper body away from the one-sided office routine. Try to install this exercise 2-3 times a day. It´ll help you right away and you'll feel better! 

 

You can find more exercises in the MonKey Desk booklet. Download now for free.

We wish you lots of fun with the exercises and a healthy office life! :-)

You might be interested in this, too: The MonKey Desk tested at Corpus Motum

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