4 exercises perfect for truck drivers

Black and gray gym equipment that can help truck drivers exercise

The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans recommends that adults get a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate-intensity cardio per week, along with two or more full-body strength training sessions. If this amount of activity feels overwhelming, the guidelines add that doing any physical activity offers health benefits.

Just as construction workers benefit from doing side bends and hamstring stretches, and nurses benefit from squats and lunges, there are a few exercises that are perfect for truck drivers. These can be done off the road or during rest breaks to help counteract the effects of sitting for long periods of time.

Here are four to consider, as well as the advantages they provide.

Running or walking

The great thing about running and walking is that you can do them anywhere. All you need is a pair of athletic shoes and you are good to go. Both of these activities can get your heart rate going, which is beneficial for cardiovascular health. You also tend to feel better mentally after a walk or a run.

And if you do these cardio activities outside, you can increase your vitamin D levels naturally thanks to the sun’s rays. Vitamin D helps keep your bones and muscles strong. It also bolsters your immune system, making it more resilient against the latest bug or cold.

Whenever you stop for a break or lunch, take a little walk, run, or jog around the area first. Hitting the pavement or trails after a long day behind the wheel is also a good way to get rid of the stress that has built up while on the road.

Shoulder shrugs

It’s not uncommon for drivers to hold tension in the shoulder area. If this tension continues to build without being released, you may notice tightness or tenderness in this area. This can make the workday feel even longer.

Sit upright in a seat and pull your shoulders back down. Then lift the shoulders toward your ears, as if someone asked you a question and you don't know the answer. Hold for a few seconds before lowering the shoulders back down. Do this a couple of times to get your shoulders to relax.

Hand stretches

Just as the shoulders can get tight and tense when driving all day, resulting in pain and stiffness, the same is true for your hands. Your hands are constantly engaged as a trucker, whether holding the wheel, assisting with a turn, or shifting the truck. Take a few minutes several times a day to give them a bit of relief.

One hand stretch to try is pulling the top of the fingers back toward your body, holding them in this position for a few seconds. Another is to make a fist, then release the fist, straighten your fingers, and try to extend and spread the fingers as much as possible. Do this a couple of times every so often to get your hand muscles to relax.


Spend all day in a sitting position and you’ll likely feel it in your legs. This is partly due to the blood flow being restricted to the lower body after long periods spent in one position. You can get the blood flowing again by doing a few squats when you get out of the truck.

When doing squats, imagine that you are about to sit back and down onto a chair. Lower your body while keeping your back straight. This exercise is also good for building core strength, which helps support good posture when spending a lot of time behind the wheel.

As always, minimize distractions while driving and safety first, so please only do these exercises when out of your vehicle during rest breaks or off the road.

Want more lifestyle tips? Check out our content library for drivers here

About the Author

Christina M. DeBusk creates small business content for a variety of publications, some of which include Businessing Magazine, Compendent, Chiropractic Economics, and more. She is also the author behind the column, "The Successful Solopreneur.

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