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Namaste at Your Desk

July 31, 2017

According to a 2015 study, more than 65 percent of people listed work as a top cause of stress. What if you could put a program into place that would help your employees find their Zen?

Well, you can. Bring the calming, yet energizing, principles of yoga into your office. Stress. It’s all around us—and it often affects both our work and our personal lives. Left unmanaged, it can be dangerous, but few of us know how to deal with it effectively.

Stress can impact our health both physically and emotionally. In fact, it’s not uncommon to experience anxiety, depression, headaches, and even stomach-related issues as a result of feeling stressed.

Fortunately, stress can often be alleviated—or at least managed—through positive lifestyle habits, including quality sleep, a balanced diet, and regular exercise. It’s especially important to find activities that help calm the mind and body.

Reset Your Mind and Body

From poor ergonomics to a creative block, employees can get caught in a slump. Trying office yoga can press a reset button. Yoga is a practice that’s designed to help the body and mind relax and focus.

During yoga, you’re taken through a number of poses designed to increase your strength and flexibility, and controlled breathing. Studies have found that this combination can greatly reduce stress. In turn, those who participate in yoga often see improvements in their mood and physical health.

So how can you bring the benefits of mindfulness into the workplace? We have a couple ideas: Either introduce a weekly or biweekly yoga class, held during the middle of the day or start off the day each day, with a few simple yoga poses. 

Whichever option you choose, your entire company will benefit from a more productive, less stressed workday—without even leaving the office.

Office Yoga: Deskside Poses 

Even if you don’t have time for a yoga class, you can still reap the benefits. Give these office poses a try, right beside your desk!

>Seated backbend. Sit in your chair with proper posture. While taking a deep breath, reach up toward the ceiling with your arms open. Release the breath and let your head fall back slightly. Hold for a few seconds, then repeat.

>Pigeon pose (seated version). Sit in your chair with both feet flat on the floor. Cross your left leg over your right, keeping the foot flexed slightly, and turn your body toward the left. Hold for
a few seconds, then switch to the other side.

>Standing thigh stretch. Stand with arms at your sides. Lift your right leg back and up toward your waist, holding it with your right hand, then lift your left hand toward the ceiling. Hold for a few seconds, then switch to the other side.