The Writing Body: 8 Quick Exercises For A Healthy Writing Year

It’s not as dangerous as ski jumping or skeleton of course, but we all know that sitting to write for long periods can cause significant damage to the body.

Here are some easy exercises to incorporate into your writing day.

Wishing you a happy, healthy and inspired year of writing!

1. Shoulders and neck

Clasp your hands behind your back. Pull your clasped hands down so your shoulders open and drop down, engage your abs, look up at the ceiling and rise up on tiptoe. Stay there for a count of 5? 10? Repeat 3x

2. Eyes

Look away from your screen or paper and focus on something in the far far distance. Now focus on something in the middle distance. On something in the room. On your thumb which you’re holding right in front of your nose. Repeat.

3. Wrists

Clasp hands. Keeping elbows against your ribs, draw a figure of eight with your clasped hands.

Clasp hands with the other thumb on top and draw a figure of eight in the other direction.

4. Fingers

Fingers and thumbs straight and together: Bring finger and thumb tips towards the base of fingers and thumbs (i.e., flex the joints without making a fist). Straighten fingers and thumbs. Keeping them straight, spread them wide open. Close them in tight together. Repeat.

5. Breathe

Sit right on your sitz-bones with your spine away from the back of your chair, feet flat on the floor. Close your eyes. As you breathe in, feel the sides of your ribs expand. Breathe out and feel the ribs close in.

6. Upper back and shoulders

Interlace your fingers, hold them in front and away from you, and draw a large vertical circle. Feel the movement in your shoulders. 4x in each direction.

7. Spine mobility

Hands on a table or anything solid about waist level: step back and press down your upper body so you in a straight line from fingertips to sitzbones, parallel with the floor. Bend your knees.

Gently press your chest down. Feels great in the shoulders, eh? Repeat 3x

In the original position – head to coccyx parallel with the floor, knees bent: Suck in your abs and tuck your coccyx under and let that rounding movement travel up your spine and into your neck, ending with your back rounded, your head in and your legs straight.

Keep the wave going by pressing your coccyx and sitzbones outward, and again let the movement ripple through your spine – now you are arcing so you’ll end looking up.

Tuck your coccyx under and repeat the wave…

8. Ankles and calf muscles

It’s easy to forget about legs when your sitting but think of all those muscles atrophying! Think of all that blood pooling! Ugh!

Stand with feet hip distance apart. You can either have your toes pointing forward (parallel with each other) or toes turned out (a ballet 1st position).

1) Plié (bend your knees making sure they are pointing in the same direction as your toes, and do not go beyond your toes). 2) Lift up your heels (keep the knees bent). 3) Straighten your legs. 4) Heels down.

Reverse: 1) Heels up. 2) Bend your knees (keep your heels up). 3) Heels down (keep your knees bent). 4) Straighten your legs.

Try to really elongate your body during this exercise.

 

 

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