Here are just a few solid reasons...
1. They reduce stiffness and tension in your body from being “sedentary” i.e. not moving, or in one position for a period of time like sitting or standing at your desk, driving, even resting on your couch
2. It increases productivity! (not sure about this one? check out the Pomodoro technique, it’s real thing!)
3. Physical movement can get you out of the stress cycle, even if the actual stressor isn’t going away! (helloooo covid!) Here’s a great podcast on that topic. brenebrown.com/podcast/brene-with-emily-and-amelia-nagoski-on-burnout-and-how-to-complete-the-stress-cycle/
According to the Pomodoro method, it’s ideal to take a 5 minute break after every 25 minute block of work and then after about 4 of those cycles you take a full 15-20 minute break. There’s loads of free apps that you can set the timers on, I just use the timer in my phone.
I encourage you to play around with that timing to make it work for you! Depending on the day, the task, and my focus I might need to do longer or shorter work periods and/or breaks.
The important thing is to actually take the (relatively) frequent movement breaks!
5 easy & free ways to take a movement break
1. Make a list of small, short mindless tasks that take 5 minutes or less that require getting up, changing where your eyes are focusing, and moving around.
2. Try some HIIT style intervals using simple movements like Squats, Jumping Jacks, or Leg Kicks for 30 seconds then 10 seconds of walking or marching in place. In 5 minutes, you should be able to get through about 7 cycles with a short cool down. (don’t forget to hydrate!)
3. Do a standing version of the hundred series breaths. Pulse your arms with each breath as you inhale for 5 breaths and exhale for 5 breaths. Try lifting one foot off for the the first half, then the other for the second half.
4. Have a dance party! Play a song you love and get dancing…or at least away from your desk and moving your body.
5. Do my neck & shoulder video on you tube. If you’ve been sitting, try it standing. If you’ve been standing, try it seated!
or keep trying different ideas until you find your faves!
I promise you’ll feel better on so many levels and your body will love you for it.
I’d love to hear how it goes! (email me)