Most people spend about 40 hours a week at work. Hectic schedules, busy days and keeping up with life outside of work sometimes leaves little time to exercise. If you’re looking for a way to increase your fitness while at work, check out some of these fitness gadgets you can use at the office.
Stability Ball and Stability Ball Chair
The stability ball is a classic fitness tool used for a variety of exercises. Stability balls engage your core abdominal muscles, but also can be a great way to improve your balance and flexibility, and increase endurance. There are numerous exercises you can perform with a stability ball, but even just the simple act of sitting on one can help you engage your core muscles. If you’re interested in purchasing a stability ball, check out the American College of Sports Medicine: Selecting and Effectively Using a Stability Ball.
The stability ball chair provides a more functional way to use the ball while at work. Here, the stability ball sits in the base of an ergonomic chair. The chair base makes the stability ball more “stable.” Plus, it has a chair back that provides comfort and as well as wheels for maneuverability.
If the stability ball or chair seems a little too intimidating at this time, the balance disk can provide you with the same benefits. In fact, it almost looks like the top of a stability ball as it is made from the same inflatable material. You can use your current desk chair with the balance disk because it sits right on the seat similar to a cushion. The balance disk can help you engage your core and improve your posture.
Resistance bands are another example of a classic fitness tool which can be utilized at work. You can perform a variety of exercises and stretches using resistance bands for a total body workout. Resistance bands are inexpensive and easy to store. If you’re interested in purchasing resistance bands, check out the American College of Sports Medicine: Selecting and Effectively Using Resistance Bands.
This small elliptical can easily fit under your desk at work and allow you to work out while sitting. An elliptical provides a low-impact cardio workout while exercising your legs. Prior to purchasing, make sure the model you choose can be used for seated workouts. You’ll also have to check your desk height to be sure your knees won’t hit your desk when you use it. Most mini ellipticals also come equipped with resistance bands for arm exercises. If you’re feeling extra daring, you can even use this machine while standing up.
Originally designed as tools for muscle recovery for athletes, foam rollers have started to develop into a tool for strength exercises. Foam rollers come in a variety of sizes. The smaller version can easily fit under your desk where you can use it to exercise your legs and calves by rolling it away from and toward your chair.
Reducing sedentary behavior is important for overall health and wellness. If you’re able to have a standing desk at work, you should take advantage of it! Standing at work can help to keep your internal body functions moving, continuously engage your muscles, and help you to be more productive. Many standing desks allow you to alternate between standing and sitting, as the desk will raise and lower to different heights.
Treadmill Desk and Bike Desk
The treadmill desk and bike desk take the standing desk one step further. These active workstations provide you with the opportunity to either walk on a treadmill or cycle on a bike that looks similar to a stationary unicycle. These desks allow you to break up the monotony of sitting with getting a cardio workout. Treadmill desks are relatively uncommon so far, but more common than the bike desk. Research is growing in support of using treadmill desks for improved health and increased productivity in the workplace; however, it is also a relatively new field of study.
IMPORTANT! Before purchasing any fitness gadgets for use in the office, confirm with your supervisor or Human Resources representative to ensure that they comply with company standards. And don’t forget to talk to your doctor before beginning a new exercise routine.
Looking for more ways to be active at work? If you’re a Health Advocate member with access to our Wellness Coaching Program, call us today to connect with a Wellness Coach for additional fitness tips.