COVID-19: How to Stay active in our own homes

With our lives being somewhat paused due to the corona crisis, it is important to exercise and keep moving.

Keep moving and exercising is not easy for teleworkers who spend 8 hours a day in front of their PC, particularly when they don’t have a professional office chair at home like they have at the office. More than ever, we need to make sure to remain healthy. As we can’t go to the sports club or walk to the office this year, we have listed some tips to keep healthy and active in our own homes, both during and after a remote workday.

1. Use an alternative to your office chair

Find another way to sit in front of your PC. A balance ball, for example, is an excellent alternative because unconsciously, you tighten your abdominal and back muscles to stay in balance. And why not work while standing up, at the kitchen isle for example. It will allow you to stretch your legs and muscles. And if you have a desk bike at your disposal, all the better! The most important thing is that you alternate these different postures, in order not to constantly sit or stand in the same position. 

2. Exercise while being seated

Do you prefer your desk chair or a kitchen chair? No problem. Even while being seated, you can do a few exercises, like alternately stretching and tightening your leg for one minute, tightening your abdominal, stretching your arms forward, … There are lots of easy exercises you can do behind your desk while working. 

3. Walk & talk meetings

Walk & talk meetings have never been so popular and who says you can’t do that from home? By regularly going outside, you get a breath of fresh air, oxygenate your brain and boost your creativity. Do you have a status call with your Manager? Or is there a brainstorming session scheduled with other members of the team? Step away from your desk and have this conversation outside while enjoying a nice walk in your neighbourhood, on the terrace, or in your garden! Make sure that you don’t have to take any notes or share your computer screen with others during this conversation, as that could be somewhat uncomfortable. 

4. Encourage each other

Not everyone will easily step away from their computer to move around, so an occasional nudge from a colleague or family member may be required. If you have children, take a regular break to do something active with them. And why not challenge your colleagues? Take on the challenge of doing 10,000 steps a day, for example. Now that most of us work from home, we no longer have to commute and we have more free time. Then those 10,000 steps a day are really within ‘foot reach’. By taking up the challenge together with colleagues, everyone exercises more and the group feeling is strengthened, even at a distance.

5. Build in some routine

Try to stick as much as possible to a fixed work schedule, with some regular pauses to keep moving.  Just like you regularly walk to the coffee machine at the office, you can take a coffee break at home in the kitchen or on the terrace, together with a roommate. A fixed play moment with the children every day is excellent quality time. If you don’t have any children, you can also do some stretching exercises on your own.

Ideally, you should move around every hour. If you can’t keep to this regularity, use an App or your calendar to remind you to stretch your legs or perform some exercises.  

6. Sports at home