Sitting in an office all day may affect your metabolism, posture, or levels of anxiety and depression. Bad posture can also cause serious problems such as back pain, digestion problems, cardiovascular problems, and potentially change your spine’s curve. Yoga is an excellent way to combat these adverse effects of sitting in an office all day. Here are the consequences of sitting all day, how daily yoga can benefit you, and different yoga poses:
Consequences of Sitting All Day
Sitting has both short- and long-term impacts on your health and body, making this seemingly harmless activity result in potentially negative consequences. If you don’t move around much at work, your body won’t burn enough calories to help you lose or maintain your weight. This will affect you more if you don’t watch your diet. Before you realize it, your body might start gaining weight as a result of inactivity.
You might also experience tightness, soreness, or pain in your spine, neck, or knees. This can come as a result of sitting for too long in an uncomfortable office chair. You may also experience worse posture overall. Practicing proper sitting posture can help combat this.
Along with these side effects, sitting for most of the day can cause muscle degeneration. Your muscles aren’t getting the movement they need to maintain their strength.
Benefits of Practicing Yoga
If you are a beginner, practicing yoga may help to release tense muscles. The psoas and hip muscles tighten if you spend too much time sitting. Practice yoga to stretch them and keep your spine aligned. This will help give you better posture.
When you spend a lot of time sitting, you might suffer from swollen legs. This happens due to blood circulation issues. Practicing yoga rectifies the problem by improving blood circulation.
Spending too much time sitting in your office may also interfere with your mindset. If you start practicing yoga, your mood may improve. You can start feeling better mentally as you inhale and exhale during yoga practices.
Yoga Postures to Combat Your Stiff Office Posture
When working for long hours at a desk, it is easy to slump into a bad posture, but you should remember proper sitting practices. Keep your shoulder up, your feet flat on the ground, and your knees at 90-degree angles. If you find your shoulders slumping forward, squeeze them toward your ears for a few seconds. Then roll your shoulders back and down. This will stretch your shoulders a bit and keep you sitting up straighter.
Good sitting posture can only do so much. Here are some yoga practices you can use to combat stiff office posture:
The half-pigeon pose helps you relieve tight hips after sitting for an extended period. To practice this, place your hands and knees on the mat. Slide your right knee forward with your left leg back. Try to bend your front leg at an angle of 90 degrees. Sit up tall and bring your arms out in front, hinge your chest forward as you exhale. You will experience a deep stretch in your legs.
To get an even deeper stretch, you can lean forward toward the floor. Breathe deeply as you stretch further. Do not do this if you feel pain. Yoga should not be painful.
This pose helps us relax our mind, back, hips, neck, and shoulders after spending a lot of time sitting. To practice the child’s pose, kneel and lower your butt back towards the heels as you exhale. Do this when your knees are shoulder-width apart. Bend and allow your forehead to touch the mat, and stretch your arms behind you. Breathe deeply and maintain the pose as long as you desire.
You can practice variations of the child’s pose. Extended child’s pose is essentially the same position as a normal child’s pose except your arms stretch out in front of you. This provides an even deeper stretch.
For some people, a regular child’s pose can be difficult to maintain. If the pose is putting too much pressure on your ankles or stomach, you can widen your knees to a bit further than shoulder-width apart. This relieves pressure on your stomach and ankles. It is also a good introduction to child’s pose for yoga novices.
Happy Baby Pose
The happy baby pose allows you to relax your hip joints, which can become stiff after spending so much time sitting. Lie on your back and bring the knees towards your chest. Grab the feet and pull them down to spread the knees on either side of the torso. Try to lower the hips to the mat. Practice deep breathing as you rock side to side and return to stillness at the central position for 30 seconds.
The cobra pose lengthens your spine and opens up your chest after sitting the whole day. Practicing this pose begins with you lying on your stomach and your back slightly lifted. Place your hands on the mat next to your torso with the elbows tucked close to your sides. You should then slightly push upwards with your arms and maintain this position for as long as is comfortable.
Cat and Cow Pose
Start practicing the cat and cow pose because it may help stretch your spine after being hunched over a desk all day.
Begin this pose by creating a tabletop position with your hands and knees on the mat with a straight spine. Inhale to curve up your spine up to create a cat pose. Exhale to arch the spine down to create a cow pose. Do this several times.
Start Practicing Daily Yoga Today
Incorporate effective daily yoga practices to combat stiff office posture. A home practice can begin with only 10 minutes each day. You may use online classes, books, and articles to guide your exercise. Once you’ve mastered the basics, you’ll be able to do more yoga intuitively. If you want more hands-on learning, take classes at a studio. Find classes and teachers who can help you combat stiff office posture.