I'm sure many of you are reading this at home right now. The increased time spent at home due to the new corona virus is a concern for the negative effects of lack of exercise. For example, you may be walking less as a result of commuting or traveling, or you may be spending less time exercising because you can no longer go to the gym. Here are some things you can keep in mind to live a healthy life and exercise at home.

Easy to do even in a small space!

You don't need any special equipment to get started, and you can do it on the spot. Making it a daily routine at a set time, such as after telecommuting or taking a bath, will help you maintain and improve your muscle strength.

If you feel pain, please do not force yourself to do so.

(1) Elevation of the upper body

Lie on your back and cross your arms in front of your chest. While bending both your knees, raise your head and try to see your belly. You are working on your abs—try doing 10 reps.

(2) Upper Body Twisting Motion

Stand up with your legs apart as wide as your shoulders. Cross your arms in front of you and hold your shoulders with your hands. Then rotate your upper body slowly to the right and then to the left. While you are doing this, don't forget to look into the same direction as your body is rotating. Try doing this 10 times.

(3) Extension of the knee joint

While sitting in a chair, lift one leg and slowly extend the knee to stretch. Maintain that position for three seconds. Then, bring your leg down to the original position. Be careful not to have a hunched back.

Aim doing this five times for each leg.

(4) Squats

Stand with both feet slightly wider than your shoulders. Slowly bend your knees while pushing your hips back, and slowly come back up.

This will be a great exercise if you can bend down as further as having your thighs parallel to the floor. Aim for 20 reps.

(5) Flexion of the hip joint

Stand with both feet on the ground. Then slowly lift one leg as you try to keep the thigh at a position as high as possible, and maintain for 3 seconds. Then, bring the leg down. Switch to the other leg, and do the same thing. Alternate your legs and try doing this exercise five times for each leg.

If you are afraid of losing balance, do this exercise next to a table so that you can place your hand there to stabalise.

(6) Dorsiflexion and plantar flexion of the ankle joint

Stand against a wall. While touching the wall to support your body, lift your toes off the floor slowly. Your ankles should fully remain on the floor. Gently bring your toes back.

Next, slowly lift your heels while your toes fully remain on the floor. Gently bring your heels back.

Do these movements 10 times each.

Source: Health Japan 21 (Physical Activity and Exercise), Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare


If you're not in the habit of exercising on a regular basis, I recommend stretching in your spare time. It's very easy to move. Besides, stretching is said to improve your body, it is also said to help you take care of your mind.

When you spend more time working at the computer, the muscles in your neck and back that support your head are overloaded and contracted, leading to poor blood circulation and stiffness in your entire upper body. Make a conscious effort to relax your body with effective stretching.

If you feel pain, please do not force yourself to do so.

(1) Upper body stretching

Sit a little shallowly in your chair. Cross your arms, stretch upwards and hold your chest.

[POINT] Stretch it out as if you were yawning.

(2) Stretching the back

Sit a little shallowly in your chair. Cross your arms, stretch forward, and curl your back so that you look into your navel.

[POINT] Don't hold your breath; be aware of it.

(3) Stretching the shoulder blades

Sit back in your chair and raise your shoulders as far up as you can. Huffing and puffing, relax and stomp down. Repeat a few times.

POINT】Don't strain when you raise your shoulders.

(4) Stretching the neck

Relax your neck and shoulders and slowly wrap your neck around them. Turn it in the opposite direction.

[POINT] Do it slowly. It also improves blood flow and makes it easier to send oxygen to the brain.

(5) Stretching the hips

Sit a little shallowly in your chair. Slowly twist your body back as if to stretch your hips and back muscles and keep for 10 seconds. If you have more room, grab the backrest as it is. Move both left and right to increase the range of motion of the hips.

[POINT] Be aware of the balance between the left and right.

Source: Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare Tokyo Stretch Story

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