‘Office Yoga’ is a concept, fast emerging in corporate India. It is the mantra to fight stress, anxiety, and depression in today’s hectic life.
For the young working people in India today, job stress is one of the most severe problems affecting not just mental and physical health, but its ruining relationships as well. With heavy workloads and deadlines to meet, stress has become unavoidable in most offices. Be it software professionals, journalists, call center employees or others, everybody is a victim of stress these days.
Work-related stress and mental fatigue occur mainly due to increasing competition and higher expectations of better performance, and it is taking a heavy toll on young professionals. Long working hours and a sedentary lifestyle is making the young workforce prone to health risks such as heart diseases and diabetes.
A survey by ASSOCHAM titled- ‘Corporate Workforce: Chronic and Lifestyle Diseases’ found that over half of corporate India’s young staff suffer from a range of chronic and lifestyle problems. Left unchecked, job stress can be a substantial contributor to cardiovascular diseases, depression, insomnia, anxiety, breakdown, etc. If left undiagnosed it may hamper the productivity of that individual and even affect the overall life of that person.
In today’s fast-paced life avoiding stress is a challenge for most of us. But it is a challenge that we can meet and overcome.
Office Yoga program
A simple technique such as Office Yoga, a concept slowly but surely gaining importance in corporate India, not only improves health and reduces stress but it also relaxes tense muscles and helps you sleep. Office Yoga focuses on the postural awareness known as ergonomics, tension-release, and simple to do, desk-based postures of ‘office yoga’. Office Yoga is a helpful technique to fight depression and anxiety. It keeps you in good shape and reduces the risk of heart conditions and stroke. It also helps in managing high blood pressure, diabetes, and backache.
Office Yoga creates an atmosphere of decreased anxiety, less stress, positive thinking, and raises morale. The aim of an Office Yoga session is to teach staff how to protect themselves from the impact of sedentary, desk-bound work, and to de-stress and re-energize whilst at their work-station. Office yoga helps a lot in reducing muscle and joint stiffness. A neutral posture, abdominal breathing, neck stretches, shoulder shrugs, wrist stretches, and chest stretch are some of the exercises which can give the individual a relaxed feeling. Anyone can benefit tremendously by following these simple yet effective Office Yoga techniques. Yoga is an ancient spiritual practice that takes time to learn and requires concentration.
Follow these guidelines when you do yoga.
1. Breath in, breathe out
Take a few minutes to sit quietly and concentrate on your breathing. To focus on the movements you would be performing, it is important to connect your mind, body and spirit. Begin by putting your right thumb on your right nostril, deeply breathe in and out the air using your left nostril. Similarly, press your left nostril with your right index finger, inhale and exhale as much air as you can.
2 Shoulder stretching
Stretch your hands on both sides, up to your ears, while you inhale. Drop them down to your sides in their normal position, while you exhale. The process should be gradual and raising/dropping of hands should coincide with your breathing.
3 Right Posture
This simple exercise will help you to keep the position of your spine in order. First, place your feet hip-distance apart and lean forward. Then, look down at your feet. Your feet should be parallel. If you are sitting, keep a check that your hips and your knees are in right angles. Sit straight and tall at the edge of your chair.
You do not need to do the whole yoga routine until you become accustomed to the movements. The sample routines provided below take about 15 minutes to complete, which is easily incorporated into one of your breaks. By choosing a shorter routine to do you will still reap the benefits of the exercises, feel refreshed, and re-energized. The maximum amount of time you should spend on an office yoga routine is 30 minutes. Try and include Office Yoga into your routine two to three times per week. If you work at a computer for long hours it is recommended that you try to do the routine at least two times per week.
Before you begin: