Easy armchair exercises to help you stay active

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Want to keep active but can’t face getting off your La-Z-Boy chair?

Chair exercises are a great way to build up your strength and fitness levels without having to leave your living room. They are ideal for the disabled and elderly but can also be used by anyone who wants to increase their activity levels.          

Here are a few exercises you can try from the comfort of your armchair:

  1. Neck stretches

Sit up straight and tilt your head in the direction of your right shoulder until you can feel the muscles stretching. Hold your head in this position and stretch your right arm out to the side. Do this on your other side and then repeat up to five times.


  1. Shoulder circles

Put your fingertips onto your shoulders. Circle your shoulders forward 15 times and then backwards 15 times. Follow this by lifting both arms to the side with the palm of your hands facing forwards. Exhale when you raise your arms and then lower your arms to your sides as you inhale. Repeat this move five times. This will help strengthen your shoulders.


  1. Hip marching

To improve your flexibility and strengthen your hips and thighs, try some hip marching. Sit up straight and hold onto the sides of your chair. With your knees bent, lift your left leg as far as you comfortably can. Then slowly lower your leg and put your foot onto the floor. Do this five times with each leg and make sure the movements are slow and controlled.


  1. Sitting row

Position yourself so you are sitting on the edge of your seat with your feet flat on the floor. Make a thumbs up sign with both hands and hold both of your arms out in front. Pull your elbows back until you can feel your shoulder blades squeezing together. Stretch your arms out again and repeat this move up to ten times.


  1. Knee lifts

Make sure you are sitting up straight and your feet are flat on the floor. Starting with your right leg, lift your knee up towards your chest, hold it for a few seconds and then lower it back down. Repeat this move with your left leg. Aim to repeat this ten times on each leg.


  1. Tummy twist

This exercise will strengthen your abdominal muscles and help improve your posture. Hold your elbows at the side with your forearms out in front of you so your arms are at a right angle. Twist your torso to the left with your arms in this position and try not to move your lower body. While you carry out this movement, pull your bellybutton in towards your spine to engage your core. Move back to the centre before twisting your torso to the right. Aim to do this ten times on each side.


  1. Tap dance

Rest your toes lightly on the floor while in a normal sitting position. Stretch one of your legs out. First tap your heel onto the floor before tapping your toes onto the floor. Keep your leg extended while you flex your foot between heel and toe. Aim to do this for at least two minutes and then switch to your other leg and do the same.