Corporate (Workplace) Yoga – Benefits and Poses
Yoga is clearly in vogue these days. Everyone seems to be talking about all its enormous benefits. So why should corporates be left behind? Moreover, today’s challenging work environment places several demands on employees, contributing to increasing statistics of depression, low productivity, diminishing work performance, and low morale. Corporate yoga can be a wonderful way to deal with work pressure and strains. Many corporations have started yoga-based wellness schemes to extend the manifold benefits of yoga to their employees in the very confines of their offices.
What is Corporate Yoga?
Corporate yoga is a yoga program designed for the mental and physical well-being of corporate employees. We live in a busy world where employees often work long hours, possibly hunched at their desktops over a laptop or with a phone pressed to their ears. Commonly, meals are skipped with no time to spare for a break. With time, these erratic work habits can take a toll on the minds and bodies of the employees and manifest as stress, anxiety, and sickness. Constant pressure to meet deadlines can start interfering with many of their mental and physical abilities. Thus, corporate yoga is gaining mileage in the current times based on the notion that the holistic merits of yoga can benefit employees in managing stressful work situations effectively, enhance productivity, and maintain overall health and fitness.
Amazing Benefits of Yoga in the Workplace
Some of the remarkable benefits of yoga in the workplace include:
1. Minimizes Back Pain
Back pain is the most common physical ailment of people with desk jobs. A sedentary person may be more prone to backaches, neck and shoulder aches, joint pains and stiffness owing to excessive hours spent on a computer. Yoga can significantly help to lessen back pain that usually arises from holding incorrect postures at a stretch. It may also assist in lowering stress and augmenting concentration, serenity and self-assurance.
2. Fewer Burnout Rates
The stress of the daily grind can result in an employee feeling strained in due course of time. It is common for people to be doing the work meant for three people single-handedly. Workers are generally multi-tasking and handling varied portfolios on their own. They tend to manage late nights and work under tremendous stress. Regular workplace yoga sessions can successfully curtail the warning signals of weariness and exhaustion. It can also curb emotional tiredness and foster higher levels of commitment.
3. Diminishes Aggression and Hostility
A harmonious workplace is expected to be very productive. Practising yoga every day at the workplace, even for half an hour, can generate positivity and restrict feelings of resentment and hostility among employees. It can also restrain non-productive work happenings, thus creating a more conducive and healthy working environment. It can be more effective than merely receiving lectures on a healthy lifestyle while working. Yoga is known to limit levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, which can pave the way for establishing a calmer and more peaceful workplace.
4. Scarcer Absenteeism
The jam-packed and exhausting routine of the office can not only lower performance but may cause physical distress, including headaches, aches and pains, carpal tunnel syndrome, musculoskeletal pain and so on, leading to employees taking sick leaves often. Workplace yoga can boost the stamina and fitness levels of the office staff, thereby ensuring a reduction in absenteeism due to sickness or other physical issues.
5. Increases Focus and Confidence
When a person is physically healthy and fit, the feeling of wellness spills on to other walks of life as well. Yoga can boost your physical vitality which may manifest as confidence in your professional efficiency. Yoga can nurture muscle strength and flexibility along with cardiovascular health. The heightened confidence in the body’s abilities often gets translated into enhanced focus and alertness of mind.
6. Improves Digestion
A deskbound sitting job, coupled with stress and anxiety, mindless eating at the desk, and inconsistent routines, can trigger digestive issues. Yoga can aid in tackling stomach issues like acidity, indigestion and heartburn. Deep leg twists and folds can facilitate detoxification and help in throwing out toxins from the body. Once your digestive processes are in order, it can support your mind and body to make vital decisions at work easily.
7. Promotes Workforce Bonding
Organising Yoga sessions during lunch hours or breaks can be a delightful way to encourage bonding between co-workers by way of positive interactions. It can help change the mood and bring in more positive vibes, thus creating a more pleasant and favourable workplace. It can also aid in uplifting the morale of the staff when they get the feeling that the employees care enough to offer beneficial and fun activities like yoga. All this adds up to a motivated workforce and more job satisfaction.
8. Intensifies Energy
Consistent exercise can increase bodily vigour and energy. Being inactive can be counter-productive. The less active one is, the quicker one may feel less energetic or fatigued. So workplace yoga can become a useful medium for an individual to not only pay attention to his health but also make it better.
9. Refines Breathing
Yoga helps to build awareness about your breathing. When a person is not breathing correctly, it can deplete the body’s energy leading to sluggishness, as all the vital organs may not be getting necessary oxygen. Yoga can educate a person regarding conscious breathing or proper breathing which can infuse renewed energy and stimulate both the mind and the body. By learning the techniques of breathing via yoga, you can eradicate stress and anxiety and propel towards revamped competence.
10. Polishes Decision Making Skills
Exercise releases feel-good hormones like endorphins which can promote a feeling of well-being. Yoga can lead to increased levels of energy, clarity, and mental alertness among the staff, which can generate a better attitude towards the workplace. It can raise creativity and fine-tune the decision-making abilities of the workers implying more productivity.
Easy Yoga Poses You Should Try At Your Desk
You may like to go in for lengthening and stretching out of all body parts that usually get constricted because of sitting at the desk for the greater part of the day. Simple wrist and shoulder stretches that can be done at the desk or against a wall may also be a good idea to counteract the negative effects of working on the computer for long hours.
Some easy yoga poses that you may want to try during corporate yoga sessions can be:
1. Shoulder Stretch
This simple stretch can help align your body and kick off your energy levels.
- Stride to the closest wall.
- Put your palm against the wall with your hip facing towards the wall.
- Extend your arm fully and move your hand back about 1-2 handprints.
- Take your other hand to your stretched shoulder.
- Move your shoulder upwards and backwards to plug it into your back.
- Glide your hand down towards your ribs and lift them up and in the direction of your body’s centre, rotating your body open to the room’s centre and toes moving to a diagonal.
- Ensure that your full palm is touching the wall.
- You can shift your hand back a bit further to widen the stretch.
- Change sides and repeat.
2. Wrist Stretch
This easy-to-do stretch can help ease the tension and enable you to feel refreshed.
- Interlock your fingers.
- Turn your palms upside down, away from you, stretching your arms out straight, forward-facing
- Keep your arms at shoulder height.
- Straighten your back and pin your chin to your chest.
- Hold your breath for 5 counts and then move your arms overhead, extending your interlocked palms towards the ceiling.
- Raise your head and look up in the direction of your hands.
- Hold your breath for five counts again and then move your interlocked fingers underneath your chin, palms turned upwards.
- Shift your elbows downwards and draw them together to expand your wrist and forearm stretch.
- Hold for the count of five breaths.
- Release and alter the interlocking, repeat.
- Release and jiggle your hands and wrists.
3. Hip Stretch
This quick stretch can be done while conveniently sitting in your chair.
- Sit upright in the chair with your legs aligned at 90 degrees.
- Place your hands on your thighs.
- Stretch the sides of your waist and move forward to sit erect on your sitting bones.
- Lift your left ankle to cross it over your right knee.
- Fold your torso to bend over your legs, scooping your tummy, moving your chest to touch your shin, arms dangling frontward over your legs.
- Hold your breath for five counts.
- Release your left foot to put it down on the floor.
- Changes sides and repeat.
Corporate offices are stretching out to provide health benefits through yoga without fancy equipment to their staffs. However be sure to always learn from a certified instructor so that you can perform the yoga poses safely. Take time to get acquainted with the method of the poses to avoid any likely hurt or damage.