WOMEN of today juggle myriad responsibilities, and like trapeze artists, we balance the demands of work, family, fitness and passions. And while at it, understandably hard pressed for time, our sincere efforts at yoga often meet with inconsistency, leaving us a tad guilty.
Fret not, you can always bring yoga to your desk – here’s how!
Yoga is so adaptable that with a few modifications you can effortlessly incorporate the techniques to practice during your work hours; while you explore the nuances at leisure.
Take Tadasana and Garudasana that were discussed earlier: both the asanas can be done sitting erect on a chair if you focus on the arm movements.
The brunt of our daily activities — sitting, standing or carrying weights— is taken by the back, resulting in back pain, rigidity in the neck, shoulders and the limbs.
Let us wring the discomforts out with Vakrasana: A twisting posture.
- Fix the chair firmly such that it does not topple
- Sit with the feet hip-width apart, and flat on the ground
- With the back comfortably erect, take a deep inhalation
- As you slowly exhale, gradually twist the spine (from the lumbar or pelvic region and not the upper back) by holding the right arm of the chair. Hold the position for a few seconds and breathe normally
- Now inhale again and as you exhale slowly come back to the central position
- Repeat on the left side
- Do this for a few rounds and feel the stiffness subside
To combat headaches that often plague us after stressful office sessions, take respite in the power of the Mahashirasu Mudra. Indicative of the name (shirasu = head), the mudra improves circulation to the head region.
- Join the tips of the index, middle and thumb fingers
- Fold the ring finger such that the tip rests at the base of the thumb
- Hold the little finger as straight as possible
- With eyes closed, breathe slowly and deeply
- Soon, as the nerves activate, a gentle throb can be felt in the fingertips, which gradually releases the tension and relieves the pain
Stay calm and focused through the day with Chinmudra or Gyanamudra (discussed earlier). For sustained benefit, hold for longer durations — adopt the mudra and place the palms discreetly under the desk!
Stress accumulates toxins in the body. Expel them out with Kapalabhati Pranayama (refer TIT October)
Shoulders absorb the pressure of incessant computer work. Re-energise them with Uttanasana (forward bend):
- Sit on the edge of the chair. Inhale deeply
- Raise your arms over the head, and as you exhale, bend from the hip region, dropping the hands to hold the ankles
- Bury the head between the arms and relax the shoulders
- After a few seconds, on an inhalation, return too original posture
With these pointers in mind, go about your day without a worry. Weave these simple techniques into your routine. Stay unruffled and celebrate womanhood!