Stress presents itself as muscular tension in the body, which tends to manifest more commonly and profoundly in either our upper or lower body. Gender and other causal factors determine where people experience it most often. Upper body tension will be experienced as a tight jaw, stiff neck, hunched or drawn shoulders and/or pain in the upper back. Lower body tension is generally experienced as tight hips, stiff knees and/or pain in the lower back.
Desk-bound working, particularly where it involves screens, does not help our physical experience of stress. Extended periods of sitting on a chair causes the hips and pelvic region to lose mobility and become less flexible. We tend to slump forwards and downwards into the chair seat, which compresses the spine. We lean forwards toward the focus of our attention (often a screen, or a person we are in conversation with), which closes the chest and shoulders. We often clench or grind our jaw, which creates tension through the head and neck.
To resolve issues with your seated posture and ease desk stress, check out the related Smarter Wellbeing audio demo, which guides you to sit well at your desk.