We all have stress in our lives, and many of us accumulate extra stress from sitting at our desks all day.
This stress results in tension throughout our neck, shoulders, and back which can make us feel worse in other areas of our lives as well.
That is why it is important to know quick and easy ways to relieve stress.
These simple yoga poses for stress are designed to help you when you’re sitting at your desk:
Seated Mountain Pose
This exercise is great for helping you to improve your posture and release upper body tension throughout the day.
How to: Start by sitting at the edge of your seat with your feet flat on the ground, toes pointing forward, about hip distance apart. Lengthen your spin, feeling your sit-bones pressing into the chair as the top of your head raises up.
Begin by keeping your arms relaxed at your sides, and take a few deep breathes to start.
Then roll your shoulders blades back and down as you engage your abdominal muscles, pulling your lower ribs together and drawing your belly button in towards your spine.
Inhale and slowly raise your arms over your head, palms up, feeling a little bit of resistance as though you’re moving through water. Relax your shoulder blades own.
On an exhale turn your palms down and draw your arms down slowly, again as though moving through water.
Repeat 5-10 times, moving with the breath.
Have you ever been sitting at your desk and your neck starts to hurt?
For many of us this happens when are working at our computers, or you might not notice until later in the day when the stiffness really sets in.
The neck is one of the main areas people carry stress, so taking the time to move your neck and relieve tension is key to feeling better.
How to: Begin by sitting tall, lengthening your spine and the back of your neck so your chin tucks slightly.
Take a few deep breaths here, imagining that your spine is getting longer with each inhale, extending from the floor to the ceiling.
If you wish you can even close your eyes.
After a few rounds of breath, roll your head forward on an exhale. Inhale and roll your head to your right shoulder, extending both shoulders down as you do so.
If it feels good you can take a few breaths here.
On another exhale, roll your head back down and inhale as you roll your head toward your left shoulder. Again, make sure you are extending your shoulders down.
Repeat the cycle 5-10 times, following your breath.
The shoulders are another area that hold chronic tension for many people. Bringing more movement to the shoulder area will help alleviate stress.
How to: Again, begin by sitting tall in your chair with your feet planted firmly on the ground. Inhale and raise your shoulders to your ears, exhale and let them drop. Repeat this up-down movement about 5 times.
Next, inhale your shoulders forward and up, and on an exhale rotate them back and down, bringing your shoulder blades toward one another.
Repeat 5-10 times, then go in the opposite direction.
These yoga movements can really be done anywhere.
If you take a break every hour to do them you can easily decrease your stress at work.