Sitting at a desk for the better part of the day is hard on the body and can cause back aches and discomfort.
Instead of sitting still for hours staring at the computer screen, desk yoga provides an opportunity to get up and stretch to ease those aching bones. Here are a few easy poses that will leave you feeling refreshed and ready to return back to work without aches and pains.
Sitting on the edge of your chair, press your hands onto either side of the chair and lift your legs and buttocks off the chair. This will stretch your abdominal muscles and help relax your back. Engaging your core is revitalizing and stretching your arm muscles helps to engage different parts of your body. Hold for three to five breaths and repeat two or more times.
High Altar Pose
Place your arms above your head, and clasp your hands together. Stretch to both sides and breathe in and out while moving slowly downward. This action will stretch your lower back muscles, and realign your spine. It also engages your core, and expands your stomach muscles. Sitting for long periods of time can be damaging to the digestive system and stretching stomach muscles can help.
Cat and Cow
Sit on the edge of your chair, and round your back into the cat position. Hang your neck, allowing it to relax. This motion also stretches the spine, and eases pressure on the lower back muscles. Take a deep breath and move into cow, where you push your shoulders back and engages the back of the shoulders. Stretching the shoulder muscles will also expand the lower back and further relax the area. This pose is amazing on several levels for the back and shoulders.
Sit with your feet flat on the floor, and your palms face down on your knees. Turn your body to either side, until you can see behind your shoulder. Repeat this on the other side. The twist stretches several areas of the body, from head to toe. The pose itself is fairly easy to do and will stretch out your back muscles, the shoulders, neck, and buttocks all at once.
Breathing is vital to our nervous system. If we do not take the time to breathe, we will feel unwell mentally and physically. Taking time to breathe is the most important stretch of all, and will revitalize completely. A three-part breath begins with breathing in, followed by engaging the stomach muscles deeply by holding the breath for a second, followed by a deep release. Doing this movement several times will calm the system, and give you energy in a way coffee never could.
Taking time to stretch and taking deep breaths should be of equal priority to working during the day. It will help you be a better employee overall and will ease the build-up of stress in the workplace. Try to get your colleagues involved. Enjoy being an ache-free working yogi.
What kind of stretches do you do at your desk? Let us know in the comments below!