Yoga Relief at Your Desk

As a yoga therapist a big part of my job is trying to encourage clients to incorporate more movement into their day. As a business owner, however, I know first-hand the reality of what it’s like to spend too many hours sitting at a desk staring at a computer screen, and the toll this takes on the body and mind.

Many of my clients struggle with chronic pain, tension and stiffness in their necks, upper back and shoulders bought about our sedentary, screen-based jobs. Over time this can lead to postural imbalances and more chronic health issues such as tension headaches, diminished circulation, poor digestion, difficulty concentrating and even low mood.

In an ideal world we would have the opportunity to roll out our yoga mats to practise daily, but I understand that it’s not always easy to carve out the time. This is why I’m a big believer in mini-movement breaks.

The following short sequence is designed to give your body and mind a quick 10 minute reset. You can do this practice at your desk – no equipment is required other than the chair you are currently sitting in. Throughout the poses ensure that you maintain a relaxed, even style of breathing, if possible breathing in and out through the nose. It might also be nice to practise some of the poses with the eyes closed to help soften and relax the muscles around the eyes which often become tired and tense with too much screen-time.

This yoga practice will:

  • Ease tension and stiffness in the neck which may help ease headaches
  • Promote circulation and mobility to the upper back and shoulders
  • Improve breathing function which in turn will boost energy
  • Maintain a healthy spine through all 5 ranges of motion: forward-bending, side-bending, twisting, back-bending and extension or gentle traction
  • Gently stretch and strengthen the major muscles of the legs and hips, including hamstrings, quadriceps and glutes.
  • Enhance focus and concentration which will improve productivity and efficiency