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Office Chair Ab Workout to Strengthen Your Entire Core

    abs exercises you can do at work

    I spend most of my days in front of the PC, and I was happy when I found this genuinely creative office chair ab workout.

    I have been working out for a few years, and I use a wide variety of equipment, but I have never thought about using my chair to train my abs.

    The best is that these abs exercises at work are exceptionally efficient to strengthen core muscles. And it only takes 5 minutes or less.

    With the help of your desk chair, you can do the same moves as if you use an ab wheel or a roman chair workout. I think the ab roller is among the most beneficial calisthenics equipment for bodyweight exercises and core strength training.

    ​The roll-in and-out movement engages and strengthens all the abdominal muscles at once. And with some variation, the obliques can be trained as well. It works your shoulders, chest, back, and even your legs.

    ​Be careful, though. These moves put stress on your lower back, so spend time warming up and stretching a little bit after exercising.

    Office Chair Ab Workout

    Woman doing exercise while sitting on office chair

    • Roll out. The movement is the same as if you were using an ab wheel. Maybe it is harder since the desk chair is more massive, so the resistance is higher. Try to roll it as far as you can until your torso is parallel to the floor, but keep it straight. Beginners can put the chair in front of the wall. This way, they have a shorter range of motion that they can complete comfortably. With time, increase the distance.
    • Crunches. Compared to the crunches on the floor, this exercise is more challenging. Firstly, you have to keep your body up, and with that, it works your shoulders and triceps. Also, the motion is longer. I would call it knee or leg raises instead.
    • Diagonal roll out to the sides. By rolling tot sides, you can focus on your obliques.
    • Pike crunches. An excellent exercise to target your lower abs. Although, it strengthens your entire upper body, particularly your shoulders.
    • Single leg crunch. Not an easy one, but a total core workout since you have to pull your lower body in, plus keep your balance.
    • Plank crunches. Planks themselves are excellent to strengthen your midsection at your office. But, by pulling in the office chair, you can add an extra boost to the exercise.
    • Seated toe taps. Toe taps can effectively increase your heart rate, target muscles in the lower body, burn calories, and improve your balance and foot handling skills. To do this exercise in your office chair, sit up straight and lift your left foot off the floor. Hold this position for ten seconds and switch to the right foot. When doing these motions, breathe through the lower abdominal muscles.
    • Seated reverse jack knives. Jack knives are abdominal exercises designed to strengthen the upper and lower abdominal muscles. To do this exercise, sit on the edge of your office chair, lean your torso back, extend your legs in front of you. You will then go into a crunch, extend your legs back out and repeat.

    Very creative core strengthening exercises to do at your desk, aren’t they? On top of that, they are not only beneficial for shaping your tummy but also improve your posture.

    Example Ab Chair Workout

    Businesswoman stretching in office chair

    • 10 rollouts
    • 10 chair crunches
    • 5 diagonal rollouts for each side
    • 10 pike crunches
    • 10 single leg crunch on each side
    • 20 plank crunches

    This routine is efficient at strengthening and toning the entire midsection. It is also perfect as a standalone ab workout. Increase the number of sets and reps, and you will surely feel the burn in your stomach. Do it 3-4 times a week, and you will see it makes your belly firm.

    I sometimes do it before or after my cardio training or when I need some time to clear my mind while I work online.

    Special thanks to Brendan Meyers for this excellent ab workout at work.

    Note: There are also many ab exercises while standing that you can do in the office. You do not need any equipment.

    After Office Hours

    So, what can you do when office hours are over? In addition to the abdominal exercise we have already outlined above, you can do more to get a full body workout each day to round out your chair workout.

    Whether you have a home gym or not, you can do plenty for toned abs and to strengthen your upper body. Break out the exercise ball for some pre-dinner activity when you get home. An exercise ball is a great way to improve your strength, cardio endurance, and balance.

    When you sit on the exercise ball, you work out your core and strengthen the muscles supporting your spine. Over time, this can improve your posture and make you much more flexible.

    The best part? You can use your exercise ball in conjunction with your office chair workout. Roll the exercise ball away from your desk, sit on the ball with your feet on the floor shoulder-width apart. This helps with stability.

    Keep your back straight, and don’t lean too far forward. Pull your shoulders back, so there is a small curve in your lower back. Now that you have the right posture and are in the starting position, you can move on to these exercise ball routines in your office for strength training and core strength.

    Rock and roll hips

    Move your hips in different directions as you sit on the ball. This improves your posture, increased flexibility, and strengthens your core muscles and lower back. Keep your torso as still as possible, and use your hips to roll when doing this exercise.

    Lifts and kicks

    With lifts and kicks on an exercise ball in the office, you can work on your balance while strengthening your core. Start by lifting your left foot about six inches off the ground while sitting on the ball. Hold your foot there for three seconds and lower it back down to the floor. Repeat this with your opposite leg and foot, holding your right foot and leg in the same position for three counts.

    Hip Flexor Exercise for the Desk

    You can also stretch your hip flexors while sitting at your desk. Simply sit up straight in your chair, cross the right ankle over the left knee, flex your right foot, and feel the stretch. If you don’t feel the stretch in your right glute and outer hip, go forward a bit at the waist and lean more into your right hip. You want to hold this position for about thirty seconds and then switch sides.

    Hip flexors are located close to the abdominal muscles. When you do exercises that activate the abs, you also activate your hip flexors. If you feel hip pain when doing core exercises, it may mean you have weak core muscles or poor quad muscle mobility.

    What About Desk Exercise Equipment?

    You can get a compact mini-cycle, which is a great machine to offset the harmful effects of sitting too much. Pedaling improves the blood flow in your body, helps to concentrate better, and you burn a few calories as well. The desk treadmill is another option that lets you walk while doing your job at the desk.

    Do you do other other office exercises? Share with us below in the comment section.


    James Wright

    James (36) has been working out since he was 15 years old. He has a home gym where he pumps iron, does bodyweight workouts and boxing. He likes sharing his experiences with others who want to build a better physique.

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