Across the country, 36.7 million Americans practice yoga each year. Whether they’re practicing for health benefits, stress relief or overall enjoyment, stepping on a yoga mat has been proven to heal both body and mind.
For those who may not have time to visit a local yoga studio during the day, office yoga poses have become a growing trend in ergonomics and employee wellness. Subtle stretches and peaceful mind mediations transport you from a stressful office life to a sense of tranquility – right there in your little office area.
The feeling of tight shoulders, stiff neck and tired wrists can all be relieved with some simple yoga poses. Poses can be done at your desk or by finding a quite spot during your lunch break. Whatever time or place, try incorporating these simple poses into your work day:
Wrist and Finger Stretch
Stretching of any kind has been shown to have positive affects against muscle pain and strain. Simple wrist flexor and extensor stretches can help prevent against things like Carpal Tunnel and take less than 5 minutes. Simply hold the stretch for 15 to 30 seconds and repeat 2 to 4 times before conquering your next task.
This humble pose can bring flexibility to your spine and back while even stretching out your shoulders. It’s even said that the seated twist can aid in digestive issues and rejuvenate abdominal organs. Whichever way this pose helps you, it’s quick and deep enough to bring your relief throughout the day.
Otherwise known as Chakravakasana to yogis, the Cat-Cow stretch is a yoga must and an easy chair pose. The pose helps prevent back pain and aids in maintaining a healthy spine. Be sure to breathe while moving from cat to cow and lower and rise your gaze through each pose.
While more experienced yoga practitioners resort to “pigeon” or “happy baby” to help open their hip rotators, a seated version is much more practical for the office. This “Happy Hip” pose can be done in the comfort of your desk and only requires a mild stretch of the hips.
Feeling extra optimistic about stretching and bettering your posture? Get yourself a yoga ball chair for the office. These stability balls can help perk up your posture and better your balance. If you’re not quite ready to take the plunge from desk chair to yoga ball – no fear – adding in the option for even 20 to 30 minutes per day can have positive effects.
Whether you consider yourself a novice or expert yogi or are just looking for some extra comfort throughout your work day, incorporating any of these poses can help facilitate a more content office life. We recommend meeting with your doctor to discuss any yoga for the office poses, or additional yoga practices, before beginning any physical regimen.