Some short office yoga at your desk to break up your workday can improve your health and mood and may even spill over into positive lifestyle changes at home.
Back in the day, before email, texting, remote work, and other modern-day conveniences, people were often a lot more active on the job.
If you had to ask a co-worker a question, you walked across the office and talked face-to-face. Even that is discouraged in most offices between advanced phone systems and email.
This convenience has come at a significant price. According to Mayo Clinic, our sedentary behavior puts us at a greater risk of obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.
A simple 10-minute session of yoga modified for the office can do wonders for your health and productivity. It can also relieve your work stress, so you don’t take it home with you.
It’s no secret that working women experience a lot of stress in the workplace which has led to greater levels of anxiety and depression. One study found that women who practiced yoga regularly lowered their stress levels and blood pressure
But yoga offers more health benefits. A study by Bangor University in the UK found that participants who enrolled in an 8-week yoga course not only reduced their stress but also helped relieve back pain
Minute 3: The cat-cow pose is a deceptively easy, but powerful yoga posture or asana. For the office version, you can stay seated, placing your hands on your thighs.
Inhale as you arch your back and squeeze your shoulder blades together. Then, exhale and bring your chin to your chest like a cat stretching with its back in the air.
Slowly move back and forth between the two minutes for one minute, letting your breath guide your movement into each position. Your goal is to follow a gentle rhythm that is aligned with your breathing.
See the move here.
Minute 4: Next, let’s work your side muscles with the seated twist. Inhale and exhale as you twist your body to the right side grasping on the back of your chair to keep you stable.
Hold for 15 seconds. Then, repeat going to the left side.
For another variation of this pose, you can place your arm behind your back to ease into the twist. Place your right arm along the back of your chair as you twist to the right.
Hold for 15 seconds. Then, repeat on the left side.
See the move here.
Minute 1: You’ll feel a lot of this tension build up in your neck—especially if your computer is positioned so that you’re looking down instead of across. To relieve tension, till your head first down to your chest using your hand to gently increase the stress by easing it forward.
Hold the pose for 10 seconds. Then, tilt your head to the right again increasing the stretch by placing your left hand on your head.
Hold the pose for 10 seconds and repeat going to the left side. Again, hold for 10 seconds.
Then, rotate your head to the right and hold for 10 seconds. Repeat with the left side.
Next, extend your head backward to release tension in the front of your body for 10 seconds. This series of stretches target different muscles in your neck with simple changes in direction.
See the moves here.