Work + Yoga = Wellness

June 03, 2021

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With the ever-increasing work demands and stress in the workplace, employers now understand the importance of workers' health and well-being. A healthy workforce leads directly to higher productivity and less employee absenteeism. Many companies around the world have begun to implement corporate health plans to increase employees’ health awareness.

Yoga is a practice which companies are beginning to incorporate into their company's wellness programs. Having health benefits throughout history, yoga has been gaining prominence in workplaces worldwide. The need for corporate yoga has soared so much that many yoga teachers and instructors provide their services specifically for corporate offices.

Factors that yoga can influence

PRODUCTIVITY

Yoga increases energy levels and morale, making you more productive at work. When you are free from pain or health problems, you are more present and more attentive, focused, and effective.

FOCUS

Yoga poses and meditation will help you become more alert, concentrated, and efficient by clearing your mind of mental clutter. Yoga also increases blood circulation in the brain, which boosts mental efficiency. Yoga and meditation will also show you how to keep your mind calm and concentrated. In a stressful work environment, this is a very valuable skill to have.

POSTURE

One of the most common reasons people practice yoga is to relieve back pain. Yoga stretches and poses can help to relieve pain. Its poses stretch major muscle groups and aid flexibility, which helps to avoid discomfort and joint pains.

ENERGY

Physical activity, including moderate stretching, has been shown to improve blood circulation and aid energy production. Yoga's complex movements help to increase blood flow across the body while also reducing fatigue. Furthermore, you can perform basic yoga exercises and stretches for brief periods at your office to reap the benefits of yoga.

STRESS

One of the main factors affecting organizational efficiency and employee well-being is stress. Companies have to deal with significant financial losses as a result of the adverse effects of stress. Employee absenteeism, turnover, occupational injuries, and productivity are all on the rise in organizations. Yoga is one of the most practical methods for reducing stress and its harmful effects. Cortisol, a stress hormone, is reduced by it.

FLEXIBILITY

Yoga poses involve a great deal of flexibility as well as a lot of practice. Furthermore, as our flexibility grows, we learn how to use it in other areas of our lives. We learn to go with the flow and not get worked up over trivial matters.

ABSENTEEISM

Yoga practice daily strengthens one's fitness and relieves pain and anxiety. As a consequence, employee absenteeism due to illness or other health issues declines. Employee performance and efficiency are also increasing at the same time. 

AGGRESSION AND IRRITABILITY

Yoga also relaxes and calms the body and mind. A relaxed person reasons and is not irritated by any stimuli. Therefore, a stress-free and calm person is more likely to have a good perspective on life and is less likely to engage in counterproductive job practices.

Yoga stretches you can do at work

According to Harvard Business Review, these yoga exercises below will help you ease any stress you might be experiencing due to so many hours spent poring over spreadsheets. Daily practice of poses also has long-term benefits. Each pose takes less than two minutes to complete, and you can complete the entire series in under ten minutes.

Deep breathing is essential in the poses because sending oxygen to the muscles helps them to relax.

Shoulder Rolls (2 minutes)

● Lift your right arm to your ear when sitting straight. Roll your shoulder around and back slowly, bringing it away from your ear. Do the same for your left shoulder. Repeat these rolls three times more, alternating between right and left.

● Lift your shoulders to the ears and take a deep breath. Roll your shoulders around and back, dropping them away from your ear, and then release them. Repeat five times, then loosen your shoulders.

Open Chest Stretch (1 minute)

● Sit at the edge of your chair, interlace your fingers behind you, palms together, facing your back. Slightly lean forward, raising your arms to feel the stretch in your chest.

● Slowly inhale when lifting your chest. Rest your shoulders away from your ears as you exhale. Hold for ten to fifteen breaths. Slowly let go of your hands and bring them down to your sides.

Neck Stretch (1 minute)

● Sit up straight, not allowing your back to hit the back of the chair. Hold your head straight over your spine, as though a rope were pulling the crown of your head up. Drop your right ear into your right shoulder without raising or turning your right shoulder.

● Breathe in and out many times, feeling the stretch on the left side of your body.

● Swing your right hand over your head and position it on the left side of your face for a deeper stretch. Keep the pose for at least five more breaths before releasing your hand and straightening your spine, massaging your neck and shoulders softly with your left hand. Repeat on the other side.

Chair Twist (2 minutes)

● Sit next to the chair's edge, but tilt your legs toward the right side of the chair to sit diagonally. Bring your legs as close to the armrest on the side of your chair as possible.

● Move your right hand to the back of the chair on the opposite side, and grab the back with your right. Take hold of your right knee or armrest with your left hand. Deeply inhale, concentrating on lengthening the spine.

● To deepen the stretch, twist to the right, pressing your right hand against the back of the chair. Concentrate on lowering your shoulder blades.

● Deeply inhale and exhale until the lungs are full. For 10 to 15 breaths, hold the pose. Go back to the starting point. Reverse the process on the other side.

Reverse Prayer Pose (2 minutes)

● Sit next to the chair's edge. Bring your hands together, fingers pointing down, and wrap your arms around you. Rotate your wrists and turn your fingertips inwards toward your neck until they point up. Return to the prayer place by squeezing your palms together.

● Pull the other hand up to a comfortable position on your back with the support of one hand. Make sure the shoulders aren't rounded and are straight. Lightly press the outer edges of your hands into your back. Gently press your palms together.

● Plant your feet firmly on the ground. Deeply inhale and exhale, filling and emptying the lungs. For 10 to 15 breaths, stay in the pose. Exhale and let your arms hang free.

 

Yoga will help your mental and physical well-being by incorporating it into your daily routines. Yoga poses can aid in the reduction of physical discomfort, occupational tension, and absenteeism from work.

You should be more efficient and inspired to work if your energy levels are increased. Plus, it only requires you only 10-20 minutes from your work to reap the full benefits.

So, don't wait to integrate yoga into your workday and reap the benefits.

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