Whether you’re a photographer who carries a heavy camera kit or an image editor that spends all day hunched over a laptop, these seven gentle exercises can help alleviate pain and keep you feeling fresher for longer.
When you wear a camera bag, the extra weight strapped to your back forces a hunched-forward posture in order to maintain an upright position. Similarly, when working at a desk or editing photos on a laptop, there’s a tendency to lean forward, rounding the back and shoulders. This can cause pain and tightness in the shoulders, chest, neck, hips, and lower back.
So, we had qualified yoga instructor Kat Bayly guide us through some exercises that help alleviate these photography-related issues using the equipment we carry on our backs. These simple exercises are designed for use anywhere, whether at home, in the studio, or shooting in the field. They create space in the body, helping to boost energy levels during your working day. Spend a few breaths in each exercise, and don’t push too hard. Keep things light and gentle.
1. Extend Your Spine With a Camera Bag
2. Channel Your Inner Eagle
3. Open Your Chest And Shoulders
4. Squat Deeply With Your Camera Bag
5. Use a Tripod to Extend Your Legs
6. Increase Shoulder Mobility With a Tripod
7. Be Mindful When Photographing
Stress levels can negatively impact the body, with links to the immune system, headaches, high blood pressure, heart problems, diabetes, skin conditions, asthma, arthritis, depression, and anxiety.
While this isn't designed to replace any medical advice, these exercises can be helpful for those that experience physical cramping, tight joints, reduced range of motion, or excess stress due to photography or image editing. These seven small steps should be taken gently and lightly. It should be noted that they aren't intended to comprehensively cover all physical photography-related issues, but rather to look at some first steps toward gaining physical wellbeing.
If you've discovered anything that's particularly helpful for remedying physical ailments caused by photographing, why not share your findings with us below and tell us what's worked for you? If this has been helpful or you think we should do a follow-up, why not let us know what you'd like to see in the comments below.
Disclaimer: It’s advised to seek professional medical guidance when trying these exercises, especially if you have any current physical or mental health issues. A qualified yoga instructor or physiotherapist should also be able to guide you safely through postures to avoid injury. If in doubt, speak to your doctor first before attempting any of the above.