Erasmus plus - Stretching and Strengthening at Work interact

Stretching and Strengthening at Work

The optimal flexibility program requires conducting stretching relevant muscles and joints, including neck and spine, upper and lower body. Preferably, a good program for improving flexibility at workplace includes all the major muscle groups, tends to be a very brief routine (~ 5 min) while concentrating on the sensible muscle groups of the neck and spine. The stretching programs should be prescribed for any employee who is interested in improving range-of motion or preventing health outcomes of poor flexibility (e.g. low back pain, muscular stiffness, neck ache). However, to get a result, an employee needs to be involved in a regular stretching program for at least several weeks, preferably as a daily routine or as close to that as possible. Stretching can accompany other exercise programs or executed as an individual routine. In addition, any employee can adapt the stretching exercises to fit his or her individual needs, focusing stretching routine to a particular muscle with soreness or stiffness. General recommendations for stretching exercises are enlisted below.  Hold the stretching position for 10 to 30 seconds  Hold the end-position to the point of tightness or mild discomfort  Rest for 5 to 10 seconds between each exercise  Repeat each exercise two to four times, accumulating 60 seconds per stretch  Stretch at least two or three times per week at workplace The following exercises are enlisted as specific stretching routines that are focused to improve the range of motion for specific body segments, including neck, spine and trunk, along with exercises for arms and legs. All stretching exercises depicted require no additional equipment or extra room, are appropriate to various work environments and easy to learn and perform at both work and at home.

Before starting stretch exercises at work:

1. consult your doctor or physiotherapist first if you have complaints about the musculoskeletal system or you feel sick; 2. when feeling pain: tingling, dizziness, stop the exercise; and 3. never use force when performing the exercise.

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