How About a Yoga Break?
Written by Carol Traulsen.
Our jobs are killing us, literally. Too many of us have sedentary jobs that allow us to sit in a cubicle for hours at a time moving nothing more than our fingers. We roll around in our wheeled chairs from our file cabinets to our computer screens and we consider that exercise. We're lucky if we remember to take the stairs to the meeting or the parking lot. And forget about putting on some sneakers and doing a lap or three around the building for lunch, now we don't even give ourselves a lunch break, we work right through it. It's beginning to show in our lack of fitness and our stress levels. We're getting fatter and more stressed out by the day. There's a lot we can do to help ourselves.
Stand up. Right now. Really. As a part of a program to counteract a sedentary lifestyle studies have shown it's helpful to stand up for a portion of the day instead of remaining glued to your chair. It's also seems to help thinking too. Some people have gone so far as to remove their chair entirely and replace it with something like an exercise ball and they sit balanced on it instead of their chair. You don't have to go that far, but it's actually better for your back to change positions. It improves circulation if you do something besides sit all day. How about a yoga break?
I'm not talking about just keyboard yoga or yoga in your chair, though that's a very good place to start. I think we would be doing ourselves and the companies we work for a tremendous favor if we took yoga breaks at work. Imagine being able to come back to work refreshed relaxed and re-invigorated! Wouldn't that be great idea? Most people now use their breaks to get a snack and go to the bathroom. What if you could get 15 minutes of yoga in? What if you had a yoga program just for you to help you stay focused and invigorated? What if you could take an hour lunch spend about of half it doing, yoga get cleaned up, eat lunch and return to work ready to take on the world? You might be surprised at how much better you feel and how much more productive you are.
Corporations are coming around to the idea because now there's research to back it up. Studies have shown that for every 1$ invested in wellness programs at work there's a $3-$6 savings. Yoga is a low cost and innovative way for companies to reduce health care expenses, relieve stress and promote a sense of well-being. The performance of a company is dependent on its employees. Healthy employees are more cost effective and more productive.
Here are some of the benefits of workplace yoga:
Yoga improves self-esteem. When you feel better about yourself it will show in your work and you'll worry less about being outdone by your co-workers.
Yoga will help you be more creative. A break from routine often allows creativity to bloom. Practicing yoga will help you focus on something besides work and may inspire you in ways you hadn't imagined.
Yoga relieves stress. We are all worried about our jobs, money, living situations. Yoga allows us to relieve the daily stress that builds up. Once the tension is relieved we can be more productive as employees, mother, fathers, teachers.
Yoga replenishes our spirit. We have to be able to replenish our spirits or we will have nothing further to give to those around us.
Yoga improves focus. Ability to focus and concentrate are paramount to doing a job well. Practicing yoga improves focus and concentration. Employees that are focused and concentrate on the task at hand are more productive. So if yoga can do all of these things why don't more companies have yoga as a part of their health and wellness programs? Now there's a good question? Maybe that's one to ask at the next staff meeting.
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