Have you heard about or tried sitting exercises? The good news is that you don’t need a special program to reap the benefits.
The following list will get you started with some very effective chair movements.
Caution! When performing the following exercises, use a firm and stable chair that won't slide out from under you.
Sit close to the front of your chair without feeling like you are going to slide off or lose balance.
Place your right hand along the inside of your right ankle while holding the edge of the chair for stability. Raise your left hand, with a slight bend in the elbow, over your head.
Now, gently lean into your right arm while stretching your left arm over your head to the right. Return to an upright position, lower your arm, and repeat on the other side.
You should feel a gentle stretch down your side as you lean into the movement.
Sit close to the front of your chair as you did in the previous exercise. Keep your feet flat on the floor, and hold either side of the chair for stability.
Raise one knee straight up toward your chest, and then lower it to the ground. Repeat with the other leg.
Get into a rhythm so that this feels like you are marching from a seated position. When you feel comfortable with these movements, challenge yourself by letting go with one hand and then both hands. This will not only improve your balance, it will help to strengthen your core muscles. If you do this movement fast enough, you may get some aerobic benefit.
Sit straight and centered on your chair, with enough space between your back and the chair to allow for turning movements.
Extend your arms straight out in front of you, and then bend the elbows out so that your hands come in front of your chest. Keep you elbows raised and pointed outward.
Make fists with both hands. Turn your torso from side to side while punching your arms across your body in one direction and then the other. Do this as if you are trying to punch the walls on either side of you. Try to not turn your hips during this movement.
Do this exercise in a controlled manner and vary the speed.
This sitting exercise is a great workout for your back, shoulders and waist.
Chair Jumping Jacks
Most of us have done jumping jacks. This is a nice twist to that exercise.
Sit on the edge of your chair. Raise your arms to the sides and straight over your head. Touch your hands together if you can. As your arms move up, extend one leg out to the side, tap your foot as your hands touch.
Bring you arms down to your sides as you pull your leg and foot back to the starting position. Repeat with the other leg.
This may feel a bit awkward at first; but, you will get better with practice. Once you’re comfortable with these movements, you can increase the speed. As you get stronger, try moving both legs simultaneously using the same arm movements as before.
Notice that these sitting exercises make use of your full body. They can help strengthen your muscles, improve your cardiovascular fitness, and even increase your flexibility and balance. Like all types of exercise, you need to do these movements consistently -- daily, if possible -- to see results.
There are some great DVDs that feature only movements performed from a sitting position.
Our Chair Exercise DVD Pick