The benefits of practicing yoga at work are endless. Want to start but are overwhelmed by the endless options and whether or not it’s worth going with a paid versus free app?
Between the deadlines, team meetings, and to-do’s at work, it’s hard to find time to think about anything else, especially exercise. Staying fit is important, but we’re not saying you need to run a half-marathon between meetings. Just a few minutes of mindful yoga poses a day can do wonders. So give it a try – your mind and body will thank you.
1. Ease Muscular Tension
Thanks to desk-bound jobs, many of us tend to sit slouched and with our shoulders hunched for the majority of the day. This results in sore muscles whether in the arms, legs, wrists or neck. Not only is having sore muscles painful, but it can lead to other things like headaches or migraines. Another common spot for soreness are the legs and thighs. The muscles can become tight from sitting all day. Not only will your legs be sore for a day or two, but the soreness can lead to tension in the lower back.
Certain yoga poses can ease the muscle tension and alleviate pain in your chest, legs, back, or neck. Poses that target main muscles include warrior, cow face, upward and forearm plank. It’s best to do the poses for at least 30 seconds each. If you aren’t sure how to do them, there are apps that can help like Down Dog: Great Yoga Anywhere. It’s a free app that’s meant for beginners. The voice recordings walk you through poses to ensure you’re doing them right. Two more options that offer workouts to ease muscular tension are Yoga.com Studio and FitStar Yoga. The Yoga.com Studio iOS app costs a one-time purchase of $3.99, while the Android version is free with in-app purchases. FitStar Yoga is completely free with premium upgrades. Both options offer customizable workouts. You can create workouts according to your pains, skill level, or goals, or take a pre-built workout and add or subtract poses. Yoga.com Studio helps its 7 million users alleviate tension at work on a daily basis.
2. Restore and Rejuvenate
It’s no secret that when we’re happy, we thrive. This is extremely true when speaking about the workplace. Workplace enjoyment not only make us better workers, but leads to better and more quality work. And what makes your boss happier than better work?
Practicing yoga can help you become a happier person. A few minutes of poses and some simple meditation techniques can really brighten up your day. Our favorite poses include sun breath, cobra, and twist. These poses upen up your muscles, and cause a burst of energy and bliss. Don’t have time? You can even do these poses at your desk. Try out the Universal Breathing - Pranayama app for iOS and Android. It only costs $4.99 and can really help you take a step back from your day and refocus. You can also find your zen with the Yoga Studio
app. It offers a large variety of over 65 yoga and meditation classes, 80 free poses and another 110 poses with in-app purchases. Choose by level and specific category, such as balance or relaxation.
3. Improve Your Posture
Yoga at the workplace definitely helps with correcting soreness and rejuvenating your body. But practicing yoga during the day can also be done as a precautionary measure.
One of the best ways to keep yourself healthy and feeling good, is having good posture. Many people focus on their posture when they’re standing. But good posture is even more important to have when sitting. This is because we spend the majority of our days sitting – whether it’s at lunch or in front of our computers, we need to make a conscious decision to avoid bad posture. Yoga is a fantastic little trick that many yogis use to improve the way they walk, move, and flex – essentially to improve their posture. Daily Yoga, as its name suggests, encourages you to practice yoga daily and is easy to fit into your routine. You can choose a lesson by goals, like stronger shoulders or back. If you want more, you can connect with other app users and be part of the community and share your advancements or struggles. The iYoga+ app and 5 Minute Yoga also aim to provide you with more than just poses. iYoga+ provides you with writeups on different poses and how they’ll help you, while 5 Minute Yoga offers pictures that demonstrate poses to ensure you use the proper form.
4. Release Stress and Aggression
Feeling stressed about project deadlines or just frustrated by your manager's leadership style? Rather than taking out your frustrations on colleagues or your boss, turn to yoga. You can use Pocket Yoga or Sworkit to get your heart rate going. Pocket Yoga works with Apple’s new HealthKit, for those that have the iPhone 6 or higher, so you can track every mile walked, calorie burned, and more. You can even connect your music app to listen to your own music over the app’s instructor. Sworkit is ideal for in-office stress relief, as its workout sessions don’t requires equipment. Just turn on the app and a trainer instructs you through the session. The app is free but signing up for premium for $5 per month gives you access to six-week workout plans built for you.
Practice for the Body and Soul
Many people view yoga as a way to meditate in a dimly lit room with candles. It’s true, yoga can be practiced that way, but it can also be done in your office, at your desk, or between meetings. Holding some poses even for just a few minutes can alleviate tense muscles, be the zen you need, improve your posture, and release stress. If you need some guidance, just download one of our recommended apps and say “namaste”!