A few years ago a catchy phrase started to be passed around, “sitting is the new smoking”. While that statement is an exaggeration, there’s no doubt that sitting is hard on the body, especially when you sit for prolonged periods of time.
Hands up if you spend your days working at a desk?
When I’m not teaching yoga, I spend some of my time supporting other small businesses, and a lot of that work happens on my laptop, sitting at a desk – so, I can relate.
Here are my 5 favourite poses to practice after working at a desk all day:
- Apanasana – knee to chest pose
After sitting all day, nothing feels quite so good as laying down on the floor and rolling around. Let your spine be supported. Hug your knees up to your chest, rock side to side, massage your back muscles. Take deep breaths.
2. Supta Matsyendrasana – two knee twist
This is a great way to release your lower back. Slowly lower the knees to one side – you can add pillows under the legs or between the knees if it makes you more comfortable. Keep your chest open to the ceiling. Hold until you feel your body start to soften. Then, take the knees to the opposite side.
3. Baddha Konasana – butterfly
Another great posture for loosening up the low back and hips. Bring the soles of your feet together and slowly relax your upper body forward. Imagine your breath expanding your lower back and mid back.
4. Balasana – child’s pose
A great way to feel more grounded. If working all day leaves your mind racing, this is a great place to land at the end of the day. You can rest your head on your hands or a pillow if that makes your neck more comfortable. Or, add a cushion behind the knees to make more space for the knee joints. As you inhale, expand your whole body. As you exhale, sink towards the floor.
5. Matsyasana – fish pose
If you spend the day on a computer or slouched over a desk, chances are this will feel amazing. If you don’t have a bolster, grab some firm couch cushions. You can take your legs into a butterfly, keep your knees bent with your feet flat on the floor, or stretch your legs all the way out. Take the arms to the sides with palms turned up. Draw deep breaths into the lungs and open up the front of the body.
Try these out and let me know how you feel! And let me know what your favourite poses are at the end of a work day.
Photos: Lindyn Williams