In today’s world, it has become more normal to spend hours hunched over your computer than to be moving your body frequently throughout the day. If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that getting daily steps and frequent breaks at work can do wonders for your mental health. Although many of us have now returned back to the office, we should continue to take periodic breaks from our computer and be especially conscious of our posture.
While it may seem minuscule, having good posture can come with a multitude of benefits from greater confidence to better digestion and proper breathing. One of the easiest ways to correct your posture is with yoga. Simply adding one 60 minute yoga class a week can yield changes in your posture from the stretching and light strength training.
However if you can’t fit in a full class, there are numerous yoga poses from beginner to advanced that you can take advantage of for just a few minutes a day. To amplify the benefits, bring your awareness to your spine while doing these poses. Visualize your spine straightening and lengthening, and notice how this direction of energy boosts your results. See below for a list of simple exercises.
Shoulder Stand (Salamba Sarvangasana)
Lie on your back and gently place your hands under your ribs to support them. Bring your legs up to the ceiling, with your elbows firmly on the ground, and your hands supporting your lower back.
Cat Cow (Chakravakrasana)
On your hands and knees, alternate from rounding your back while inhaling, to arching your back and exhaling.
Lying on your stomach, press your palms into the ground and press upwards, allowing your torso to elongate. Draw your shoulders back and point your head upwards.
Downward Dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana)
Start your first down dog by exhaling, strengthening both legs, and keeping both heels on the mat. Take multiple breaths and gently bend and straighten the legs to feel a relaxing stretch.
Lying on your stomach, reach your hand back, grab your ankles, and inhale while gently pulling upwards. Your ankles should be directly above your back. With each inhale, deepen the pose and stretch.
Improved posture is one of the secret keys to confidence and this greater self-esteem can translate to a better mood. In regards to health, proper posture can result in more energy, boosted productivity, and fewer headaches. In the gym, proper posture results in better form which means less injury.