Although charter bus transportation has plenty of advantages, such as being a safe and affordable means of going from point A to point B, it can also take a toll on your body. Seating for long periods of time, whether it is on a chair in front of a computer screen or while traveling, can cause many issues. Here is a list of stretches to do while sitting that you can use on your next long bus trip, as desk stretches during a long workday, or as stretches for long plane rides.
Stretches to Do While Sitting
These exercises can help you feel better no matter how long you may spend in your seat and how little space you have to move around while stretching.
Upper Body Stretches
Unless you can maintain a perfect posture for extended periods, your upper back will probably be one of the first places where you may feel tension. Upper back tension tends to extend rapidly to the rest of the body, which is why it is a good place to start.
With both feet flat on the floor, lift your left arm up at a 90-degree angle while keeping your elbow down. Keeping your spine straight, place the crook of your right arm under your left arm and thread the forearm. A spinal twist with your arms straight can also help.
Middle Back & Torso Stretch
If the muscles in your middle back and torso are feeling tight, you can loosen them up by sitting with your right leg crossed over your left leg. From this starting position, twist your torso towards your right leg and hold for five seconds before moving to the other side.
Another exercise to do when you sit is to curve your spine while keeping both feet flat on the floor shoulder-width apart. Intertwine your hands with your elbows planted on your knees and curve your spine towards your seat. Hold for five seconds and repeat the process ten times.
Stretching Exercises for Your Hips
Seated stretches can also help you release muscle tension in your hip flexors. You can remove some of the pressure simply by standing up and walking around – up and down the bus aisle, for example – but if it is not an option, here is a hip stretch you can do on your chair.
Place your outer right ankle on your left knee while sitting with your back straight, keeping your hips forward. Gently push your right knee down until you feel your glutes stretch and your hips open up. Repeat the exercise on the opposite side.
Shoulders & Neck Stretch
Poor posture can often lead to pain in your neck and between your shoulder blades. Thankfully, sitting stretches are great for improving how your shoulders and neck feel on a long bus ride.
Keeping your back straight and your shoulders square, tilt your head towards the right shoulder as far as you can go without moving your left shoulder. You may use your right hand to pull your head. Hold for 30 seconds and repeat on the other side. An effective shoulder stretch involves rolling your shoulders up, back, and down ten times, followed by rolling them up, forward, and down ten times.
Stretches to Do While Standing
Besides stretches to do while sitting, you can take advantage of rest stops to do some exercises before resuming your journey. Don’t forget to stretch after the ride too — these stretches are long charter bus ride essentials.
Upper Body Stretches
Once you have more room to move, it will be easier to stretch your whole body. Gently lift both arms above your head and stretch back, exaggerating the natural curve of your back until you feel the tension in your shoulder muscles and abdominal belt. Hold for 10 seconds before you lean forward.
If you have enough room, you can also do some waist twists. Stand up with your knees bent slightly, twist your chest towards one side from the waist with your arms lose, then twist to the other side. Keep your head forward and your shoulders forward.
Legs & Lower Body Stretches
An effective way to stretch your back leg area when you don’t sit anymore is to touch your toes. Keep each leg as straight as possible and bend at the waist with your chest and shoulders straight to reach your toes, keeping your arms loose. Hold the pose to relax tight muscles in your hamstrings and lower back.
Ankle rolls can help restore blood circulation and avoid cardiovascular disease incidents. Hold on to something to keep your balance and lift one leg, bending at the knee. Rotate that one foot at the ankle in one direction, then repeat in the other direction. You can also do a calf stretch to help with leg pain. Standing on your left leg, put your left foot forward on a surface like a bench or a curb and push against your foot while leaning your chest forward. You should feel the stretch behind your toes and in the arch of your foot.
Lunges can relieve tight hips. With one knee bent and the back leg straight, push your pelvis forward while keeping your chest and neck straight. You may place your arms on your front leg for balance. Repeat on the opposite leg.
It is not always easy to find exercises to stretch while sitting on a chair for long hours, but we hope this guide can help you feel more comfortable on your next trip. Other options to release muscle pains can be as simple as moving your neck from side to side. You can also stretch your right toes in your left hand (or the opposite) to help with leg pain. Our charter bus rental company is here to help with more tips or a personalized quote for your next trip if you are ready to hit the road.