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As working from home becomes part of the new normal, it is a good time to think about how our bodies have adapted to our new environment. The body is clever at adapting to a new desk set up, different movement patterns and long periods of being sedentary at home. These adaptions in the short term can be helpful but as not always compatible to our exercise routines, hobbies and weekend activities which hopefully we will be doing more of now.  Overtime muscles can shorten, and joints can lose their mobility causing mechanical restrictions in the body which may not allow us to perform physically active tasks. It is important to recognise how differently we have been moving this year and allow time to slowly get back into the swing of living a more active lifestyle outside the comfort of our homes.

A few simple things can help support your body adapt to its new environment and even thrive in new hobbies or exercise routines you may wish to start.

First prevention is key! A daily stretching routine can save you from regular aches and pains by allowing your body to move in ways it wouldn’t normally when sitting or standing at work. Sometimes stretching may not be enough which is where strength exercises can come in handy to help support your body through long workdays and adapting to new exercise routines. Your osteopath can provide strength exercises or Pilates specific to your body, lifestyle and work requirements. 

Secondly, tune in to your body’s messages and respond to them appropriately ASAP! Your body will tell you before an injury occurs if it is not coping with the physical stress it is under through aches, pain, functional restrictions and discomfort. This is the time to use tools your osteopath has suggested (or consult your osteopath for advice) such as stretching, foam rolling, strength exercises, adjusting your ergonomic desk set up and incorporating daily movement. The sooner you can help yourself or see your osteopath for management the sooner your body can adapt and thrive to change.

Check out City Osteopathy’s social media pages for great stretching, foam rolling and Pilates videos to inspire you to incorporate daily movement and feel better today.

Dr Sarah Cust Melbourne Osteopath