If it feels like you spend your whole life at your desk, it’s probably because it’s the truth. The research by Sanlam Private Investments recently showed that on average, office workers spend 55% of their work day sitting at their desk. To make matters worse on our bodies, almost 60% of office dwellers don’t even take a lunch break and eat at their desks instead. While pureLYFT™‘s Energy Stir Sticks can help with an energy boost, these are the best yoga moves you can do at your desk to give your body a break.
Open those hips!
Your hips can get very tight and sore sitting at a desk all day. One great move to open up those hips and also get a deep hip stretch is demonstrated below. Sit in your office chair and cross one ankle just over the top of the knee.
Then begin to fold at the waist, keeping your back flat with a long neck (no round caterpillar backs, please!) Then place your hands in prayer position and gently press your elbows down on the knee and ankle. You should feel a deep hip stretch on the bent leg. This is also a great prep for Tree Pose and Pigeon.
Since we sit at our desk endlessly, our arms are stuck in about a 90 degree angle all day and can begin to ache. The chest can also begin to collapse inward and cause neck and back pain. Here is a great stretch tired arms that can help realign the neck and overall posture.
Sitting in the office chair raise one arm straight up. Make sure both sit bones are firmly on the chair.
Gently begin to fold at the elbow and reach the hand to the opposite shoulder and then slowly towards the middle of your back. For a deep stretch you can grab the back of your shirt or you can grip your hand with the opposite hand. If this causes any discomfort in the neck or shoulders slowly back off and do not go so deep into the stretch.
Once you are settled into the stretch take 3-5 very deep breaths breathing into the back body and the tricep. You should feel a wonderful release opening the chest and relaxing the head back a little into the cradle of the arm. Repeat on both sides. This is the perfect prep to open the body for Warrior 2, Half Moon Pose, Side Angle Pose and a great counter pose for Eagle Arms.
By the end of the day, it can feel as if our body loses muscle tone and strength. Keeping those legs toned can be hard but poses like Utkatasana (aka Chair Pose) can help tone areas that are especially problematic for women. It will work the arms, abs and legs, and also help stimulate the diaphragm and the heart.
Sit at your desk and begin to reset your breathing. Breathe in deeply through your nose and exhale through your mouth. You want the inhale to match your exhale, counting to four each breath in and each breath out can be very helpful.
On an inhale begin to lift out the chair, keeping the feet together, big toes touching and heels slightly apart. Arms are reaching up to the sky, hands facing each other and try to keep the shoulders down away from the ears. Keep the hips low and reaching for the ground.
Once you are in the pose check on your alignment. Knees should be together and in line with each other. When you look down you should be able to see your toes, if not bring the knees back. Draw the tailbone down towards the floor and keep the back long and strong. Sink those hips down low and in opposing direction open lift the heart to the sky. When you feel confident that you have nailed the pose hold for a full 3-5 breaths, sit back down and repeat.