Our top 5 Yoga poses to do when sitting at a desk all day
We are almost 18 months into the majority of workers working from home and this working from home life looks like it will be the new normal for most. There has been a number of studies and surveys over the last 18 months all of which confirm that most workers are now working longer hours at home than they would in the office. Working longer hours means more time at your desk.
There is a growing body of evidence that confirms sitting at your desk all day can cause a number of health issues. Sitting all day can raise the risks of obesity, heart disease, diabetes, deep-vein thrombosis, and varicose veins. Sitting can tighten muscles , if you have been sitting for a number of hours this can stiffen your hamstring muscles, hip flexors or even your joints. With weaker hamstring muscles you are at greater risk of injury from falls or straining yourself when exercising. Sitting at your desk all day can also cause damage to your posture if you’re not sitting right or slouching all day.
It is important to ensure that you take regular breaks from sitting at your desk and getting up to move your body. Taking a short walk at lunch time or take any of your work calls standing up or walking around is a great way of building more activity into your working day.
We have put together a list of 5 yoga poses which are sure to having you feeling revived and will help to release the tension in your body that has built up over the working day.
If you are new to yoga or are looking to buy a new yoga/exercise mat be sure to check out our guide on how to choose a yoga mat.
The Fizfit top 5 yoga exercises for sitting at a desk all day.
1. Cat and Cow Pose
This pose is ideal for stretching out your back and the spine, which is what you need if you have been sitting at your desk all day. The cat and cow pose can also be very effective at relieving headaches, which may happen if you are staring at the screen for too long.
- Start with your hands and knees in a table top position, ensuring that your hands are in line with your shoulders and your knees are directly under your hips. Have your spine in a neutral position.
- Inhale, when doing so curve your spin up into the cat position. You should look like a cat stretching.
- Exhale, and come into the cow pose. To do so drop your belly to the floor, lift your chin and chest and stare up to the ceiling.
- Inhale again and go back to the cat position.
- Repeat this 10-20 times. To rest, sit back on your heels with your torso facing up.
Be aware of your breaths when doing this pose, it is important to ensure that when you are inhaling and exhaling that it is in line with your movements.
2. Low Lunge
Lunges are a great exercise for stretching out your hips and it can help with any lower back pain you may experience from sitting down all day.
- Place one leg out in front of you at a 90 degrees angle.
- Your back knee should be on the mat with your toes untucked.
- Engage your glutes by pushing the shin of your back leg into the mat.
- Engage your abs and rib muscles to protect your back.
- Once you have a solid foundation and feel solid, slowly lift your hands above your head.
- Tuck your chin slightly into your chest to work your neck muscles.
- Hold this pose for 5 seconds before changing legs.
3. Childs pose
Childs pose is the perfect pose for resting your mind after a day’s work. This is known to be one pose that is featured in almost every yoga class and will also work to open your back, shoulder and hips after sitting all day.
- Sit down on your mat with your legs folded beneath you.
- Your toes should be touching but your knees should be apart.
- Place your chest between your thighs and bring your forehead towards the floor.
- Extend your arms out in front of you.
- Breath in and out.
- Hold the pose for as long as desired.
4. Downward Facing Dog
This is one of the best yoga poses for strengthening your lower back, hands, hamstrings, calves and your wrists. Not only will downward dog help to strengthen, it will also stimulate blood flow and improve your posture. Making this the perfect pose to do after sitting at your desk all day.
- Begin on the floor in a table top position, your hands shoulder width apart and your hands should be in line with your shoulders. Your knees should also be shoulder width apart.
- Lift your knees off the ground, tuck your toes against the mat. Lift both knees into the air.
- You should now be in a “v” shape.
- To extend and lengthen your spine, push down on the palms of your hands while also pushing into the balls of your feet.
- Pull your pelvis up to the ceiling, using your upper arms to help stabilize you and keep your form.
- Hold in this position for 5-10 breathes.
- Release slowly back to your starting table top position.
If your heels can touch the ground but there too much tension in your hamstrings, bend your knees to release this tension.
5. Rag Doll Pose
The rag doll pose will be a great pose for stretching your spine, releasing any tension in your lower back, relieves stress and clams your mind, releases tension in your neck and shoulders.
This is the perfect pose to stretch out your back from sitting at your desk all day long.
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart with a slight bend in your knees.
- Bend forward from your hips, allowing your head to hang between your upper arms.
- Cross your arms over your head, with each hand grabbing the opposite elbow and let your head hang loose.
- To further stretch out your back, simply sway from side to side.
Be sure to check out our Fizfit Elite yoga mat, this is the perfect mat for your work for your at home workouts and yoga.