Short Desk Workout For the Abs

The great news is that there are simple, yet powerful ways to work exercise into our daily routines.

Desk Workout [image source:], crowd ink, crowdink,,
Desk Workout [image source:]

The statistics are nothing short of staggering. The average person spends roughly 13 hours a day sitting at home and work… 13 HOURS!

That includes sitting while at work and sitting in front of the TV. When you add in the average of around seven hours of sleep at night, that makes 20 hours of literally not moving. Insane.

However, the solution to this problem doesn’t lie in going to the gym for an hour every day. Studies have also shown that no amount of exercise can completely undo the harmful effects of sitting motionless.

We therefore need to add short bursts of activity into our daily lives, breaking up our time spent with our glutes pressed firmly into a chair. Most fit people already do this – many without even really realizing it.

The great news is that there are simple, yet powerful ways to work exercise into our daily routines. While most of us have no choice but to spend time sitting throughout the day, this doesn’t mean you can’t make that time physically productive as well.

Here are three great exercises that you can do while seated at your desk, on the couch, while in the doctor’s waiting room… anywhere! Do 30-second intervals of each, a few times a day, and you will be amazed at the results.

First, try seated bent-knee leg raises. Sit on the front edge of your chair, and pull your knees up towards your chest. Raise the knees until they almost touch your chest, then lower again, really squeezing the abdominals. Perform this move for thirty seconds, then take a short break.

Next, focus on the sides of the abdominals by performing the same basic movement, but adding a twist as you raise your knees – first to one side, then the other. This will place emphasis on the obliques and the serratus muscles on the sides of your abdomen.

The third variation takes those two components and adds in the lower abs. Lean back in the chair and straighten your legs, then perform a series of straight leg raises to target the lower abs.

And that’s it! Let us know your own tricks for keeping from getting glued to your chair below!

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Tom Holland is the Chief Fitness Advisor for Nautilus, Inc., currently working with their Nautilus, Bowflex, Schwinn & Universal brands as a strategic consultant, media spokesperson, writer, and in the development of new programs and products. He is an internationally-recognised fitness expert, exercise physiologist and certified sports nutritionist with over two decades of experience in the industry. Tom also competes in Iron Man, marathon and Ultra Marathon events around the world, and has published several books offering expert training advice including; Beat the Gym: Personal Trainer Secrets Without the Personal Trainer, and The Marathon Method.