Office Chair Yoga: Workouts at gym are so yesterday. Try these 4 exercises at your workplace and reap health benefits
We know it's Monday but how can we keep the secret of brushing aside the blues only to ourselves when we landed on a jackpot of Office Chair Yoga which includes exercises that keep backaches, neck pain, muscle stiffness and joint issues at bay while we work long hours? Yes, you read that right! Given the pace of our lives, the unconventional working hours and corporate culture have led to an increase in lifestyle disorders but even everyday objects have the potential to aid us in improving our health and wellness and the practise of chair yoga is one such perfect example.
If you want to make health your priority and take the required steps to remedy this, health experts suggest that rather than relegating your fitness only to a gym, you could make small adjustments to your existing lifestyle by taking the stairs instead of the elevator, replace carbonated drinks with herbal tea and paying more attention to your breathing.
Benefits of chair Yoga:
Talking about chair Yoga in an interview with HT Lifestyle, Himalayan Siddha, Akshar - Founder of Akshar Yoga Research and Development Centre, shared, “This form of yoga can be used to improve posture, increase flexibility and improve balance while avoiding injury. Chair yoga is the general term given when you modify yoga poses so that they can be done whilst seated in a chair. This makes yoga more accessible to people in two ways.”
He added, “Whether at work, or home, you can stretch, bend and twist at least once every hour. Chair Yoga is also beneficial to those who cannot stand or lack the mobility to move easily from standing to seated to supine positions. While chairs with wheels are not suitable since they are unstable, almost any other chair will do. If height proves to be problematic, you can use blocks or a folded yoga mat under your feet to give yourself a firm foundation.”
1. Chair Spinal Twist - Ardha Matsyendrasana
Method: Come to sit sideways on the chair, facing to the left. Twist your torso toward the right, holding onto the back of the chair, for a spinal twist. Lengthen your spine on each inhale and twist on each exhale for five breaths. Move your legs around to the left side of the chair and repeat the twist to the right side.
2. Chair Veera Bhadrasana
Method: As you exhale, stretch out to open up the arms with the right arm coming forward and the left arm going back. Pull the left hip back and turn the torso to the left, so that it is aligned with the front of the chair. Gaze out over the right fingertips and hold this variation of Veera Bhadrasana for three breaths.
3. Chair Eagle – Garudasana
Method: Wrap your right thigh over your left thigh for Garudasana or Eagle pose. If you can, wrap the right foot all the way around the left calf. Do the same with your arms by crossing your left arm over the right one at the elbow. Bend the elbows and bring your palms together to form Namaste if possible. Keep your shoulders relaxed and lift the elbows up. Hold three to five breaths. Repeat on the other side.
4. Chair Pigeon - Eka Pada Rajakapotasana
Method: Sit up straight in your chair. Hold to lift and place your right ankle on your left thigh, keeping the knee in line with your ankle as much as possible. Hold this chair pigeon for three to five breaths. To deepen the stretch, you can bend forward slowly. Repeat with the left leg.
Chair Yoga allows you to experience a well-rounded exercise program, especially if you are a beginner, since chairs assist you in stretching even as you remain seated and do versions of twists, hip stretches, forward bends and mild backbends. Even with this modified variation of Yoga, you can still enjoy other health benefits of Yoga, including improved muscle tone, better breathing habits, reduction of stress, better sleep and a sense of well-being.