6 Simple Exercises You Can Do At Your Desk

A collage of a standing desk, an exercise bike and a man exercising his triceps with a resistance band.
FlexiPoint/FlexiPoint/Fit Simplify

Making the time for a full workout may not be possible for everyone’s schedule. However, if you spend your days at a desk, there are plenty of simple exercises you can do while you work.

Nowadays just about everyone’s schedule is so full, going to the gym or just exercising for an extra 30 minutes can be a real challenge. But with these simple desk exercises, you can exercise while you work, and you won’t even get sweaty!

Switch out your office chair for a Swiss Ball

A man and woman are sitting on Swiss Balls in the office.

Tridier

Swiss exercise balls are known for their versatility and are an excellent way to improve your balance and strengthen and challenge your core. All you need to do is balance on it as you type on your computer.

This is exactly why they are also called stability balls. They help you maintain good posture by preventing slumping. Using a Swiss ball also relieves lower back pain because you don’t put too much weight on your sacrum. They also keep you sharp and ready to jump into action at a moment’s notice.

Get a standing or walking desk

Standing desk in an office environment and at home.

FlexiSpot

Long office hours also mean sitting for a long time. Some days, the only exercise you’ll get is a few trips down the hall to the restroom or to refill your coffee in the break room. Therefore, many companies encourage their employees to replace their desks with standing versions. Some even add treadmills to their standing desks to keep them moving.

Desk treadmills are a pretty cool invention. They usually don’t go faster than 4 mph so there is no fear of injury or sweating. Treat your Zoom meetings like a walk and talk in the park. Not only will you feel better and maintain your circulation, but you will likely find yourself more productive.

If your company doesn’t want to invest in or allow for desk treadmills, but does approve standing desks, go for one of these. It still allows you to move more, even if you’re just shifting your weight from one foot to the other.

Keep your legs working with an exercise bike

Two images of a stationary office bicycle.

FlexiSpot

You may not be in the Olympics anytime soon, but riding a stationary bike while working on that presentation or chatting with Alice from accounting is a great workout. Even if you don’t pedal, simply sitting in a bicycle seat instead of a chair will train your core, keep your legs tense and prevent your spine from sagging.

If you already have a standing desk, you can just add a bike that works, especially if you work from home. Or you can invest in this great desk bike from FlexiSpot. It has a work surface that is large enough for your laptop, tablet and phone.

Kick in your office chair with a mini bike

Mini exercise bike in black and white.

GOREDIA

Your office may not be ready for a SoulCycle collab anytime soon, but that doesn’t mean you still can’t pedal! This mini exercise bike from GOREDI fits under any desk, so no one has to know it’s there if you don’t want to.

Choose one for your office or co-working space, or use it in the living room while watching TV. However, these little bikes are addictive, so you might find yourself shedding those extra calories without feeling like you’re even putting in the extra effort.

Throw some resistance bands in your bag

A collage of resistance bands and a man working on his triceps with a resistance band.

Pass Simplify

The smallest and easiest tool to smuggle into any office is a set of resistance bands. Not only do they help you get some exercise, but they can also make long days at the office more enjoyable.

You can loop them around your thighs or ankles to work out your quadriceps, hamstrings and glutes, or you can tie them to your desk and train your arms by pulling on them. They’re a super easy way to get your blood pumping faster and get your heart rate up between meetings.

Work in some stretching

Doing a few simple stretches throughout the day can benefit your physical (and mental) health. Stretching not only improves circulation, but it can also increase your focus and concentration and give you more energy.

There are countless stretches that you can do in the office, even if you are wearing a dress or a suit. Develop your own routine, or just follow the video above by AskDoctorJo. Pay special attention to your neck and back as these are the areas most affected by sitting for hours on end.


If you’re struggling to fit in a daily workout, it’s time for some multitasking! Just because you’re in the office all day doesn’t mean you should skip your exercises. Each of these simple, yet effective options will ensure that you get your work and exercise hours every day.

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