Fitting in a Yoga Workout at the Office
Best Poses When You Only Have a Few Minutes
You can still take advantage of the many benefits of yoga even if you do not have much time available. The next time you have a few extra minutes, try one of these poses.
Place your hands on the floor and move your feet backward. Extend your legs fully, and balance your weight on your toes. Keep your hands a shoulder's width apart. Hold the pose for five to 10 breaths. The plank pose strengthens your arms, wrist and spine; conditions your core and hamstrings; and improves posture and balance.
Begin in the plank position. Bend your arms, keeping your forearms on the mat. Raise your hips toward the ceiling, and form an inverted "V" with your body. Keep your head in line with your spine. Hold the pose for five to 10 breaths. The dolphin pose stretches and strengthen your arms and legs, eases digestion, opens your chest and shoulders, and helps relieve stress.
Begin the pose on all fours with your spine straight. Keep your arms in line with your shoulders and your knees under your hips. Exhale and round your spine upward. Inhale and return to the starting position. Repeat the pose five to 10 times.
The cat pose strengthen your shoulders and wrists, reduces stress, keeps your spine flexible, and improves digestion and blood circulation.
Ending the day with a yoga workout is the perfect way to relax and unwind. Unfortunately, too often, the kids need help with their homework, or you are just too tired to even think about unrolling your yoga mat. Luckily, you can still fit a daily workout into your hectic schedule when you follow these tips for practicing yoga at work.
Hit the Company Gym Before or After Work
If you are lucky enough to work for a business that has a company gym, take advantage of the onsite facilities to do a little yoga before your shift starts. Plan to arrive a little early at least a few times each week. A 15- or 30-minute yoga session will not only strengthen and condition your body, but also help you ensure that you start the day calm and centered.
A yoga workout is also the ideal way to decompress at the end of the day. You just may find it's easier to face the crowds on the bus or train or navigate the latest traffic jam if you have already taken advantage of a few moments of Zen. If things are really jammed up on the roads or railways, there is no point sitting in traffic when you will not move anyway. Why not take advantage of the time to get in your workout, then hit the highway when the jam clears?
Take Advantage of an Empty Conference Room
A conference room or any room that has a little floor space can substitute for an in-office yoga studio. Set up your mat at lunchtime and perform your favorite stress-busting poses. Hate working out alone? Ask your yoga-loving co-workers to join you, or consider teaching yoga poses to your fellow employees who haven't yet experienced the joys of a yoga high.
Be sure to check with your supervisor before you take over the conference room, as some companies consider impromptu exercise sessions to be a liability risk. If your supervisor or company management need a little convincing, share the many benefits of yoga, including:
- Reduced stress
- Better posture
- More energy
- Fewer headaches
- Improved memory and ability to concentrate
- Lower blood pressure
- Improved immunity (fewer sick days!)
- Lower blood sugar levels
- Better heart health
Practice Chair Yoga
Yoga is a very versatile form of exercise. In fact, many yoga poses can be adapted for sitting. If it does not seem likely that you will be able to enjoy a full workout, a little chair yoga provides an excellent alternative. Performing chair yoga poses for as little as 10 or 15 minutes can relieve muscle aches, reduce stress, and help you feel more energized.
Visit a Yoga Studio on Your Lunch Break
If you are lucky, a yoga studio is just around the corner from your office. Even if you regularly visit a studio at home, there is no reason you cannot also become a member of a studio close to your office. Since every instructor has his or her own style, you just might find that you enjoy the change of pace.
Looking for yoga classes that fit your busy schedule? Call us and we will help you find a class that is perfect for you.
American Osteopathic Association: The Benefits of Yoga
American Psychological Association: Exercising at Work Boosts Productivity, 03/07/12
Yoga Journal: The Office Yoga Sequence to Restore and Rejuvenate, 03/10/16
Today’s Parent: 4 Easy Yoga Poses to Do at Home in 15 Minutes, 04/22/16
Yoga Journal: Dolphin Pose