This post is written by guest blogger, Sara Giboney, an Activate Buffalo County coalition member.

Sitting in an office chair for eight or more hours a day can leave your body feeling stiff, tight and sore. Those long hours spent sitting and looking at a computer day in and day out can cause tightness in the hips and shoulders, and soreness in the lower back and neck.

Incorporating some simple yoga poses into your workday is a great way to prevent tightness and soreness. 

Taking a few minutes a day for yoga, can also help you be more productive. 

When we’re at work, we often, without noticing, take shorter more shallow breaths because we’re stressed, anxious or rushing to get a project finished. Yoga allows us to focus on taking deeper breaths, which can help reduce stress, calm the mind, improve mental clarity and concentration, increase productivity and improve your overall well-being.

Try these poses daily while sitting at your desk.

Office Yoga

Reach to Ceiling

Seated in your office chair, place both feet on the ground. Inhale as you reach both arms overhead, placing your palms together. Perhaps, taking your gaze to the ceiling to add a small backbend if it feels good.

Side Stretch

Grab your right wrist with your left hand. Lean to the left side. Keep both feet on the ground. Take a few deep breaths. 

Grab your left wrist with your right hand. Lean to the right side. 

Seated Twist

Place your left hand on the right arm of your chair or on top of your right thigh as you place your right hand on the back of your chair. Lengthen through the spine. 

Place your right hand on the left arm of your chair or on top of your left thigh as you place your left hand on the back of your chair. 

Neck Stretch

With your hands in your lap or at your sides, lower your right ear toward your right shoulder. Hold for a few breaths. 

Bring your chin to your chest. Hold for a few breaths. 

Lower your left ear toward your left shoulder. Hold for a few breaths.

Hip Opener

Cross your right ankle over your left knee. Flex the right foot. Inhale as you lengthen the spine, sitting up tall. Exhale fold forward. Deepen your fold if there is no pain in the knees. If you experience pain in your knees, sit up taller. 

Cross your left ankle over your right knee. Flex the left foot. Inhale as you lengthen the spine. Exhale fold forward. 

Breathe

Set a timer on your phone for as long as you would like (1 to 10 minutes, maybe). 

Sitting with both feet on the ground, your hands folded in your lap or palms facing up or down on your thighs, close your eyes. Take a few deep breaths, focusing on moving your breath into your belly. With every inhale, your belly expands. With every exhale, your belly sinks in. 

If you find your mind wandering, come back to your breath. Say silently to yourself “inhale” every time you inhale and “exhale” every time you exhale. 

You can also find a mantra that speaks to you to use with your breath. If you’re stressed or feeling angry or frustrated, I like the mantra, “Peace begins with me.” 

Example:
Inhale – “Peace”
Exhale – “Begins”
Inhale – “With”
Exhale – “Me”

Sara Giboney is a holistic health coach who helps busy women break free from yo-yo dieting and emotional eating to create healthy, happy and empowered lives.

Sara is a graduate of the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and is Nutritious Life certified. She is a 200-hour certified yoga teacher and a certified group fitness instructor. She offers one-on-one health coaching in-person and virtually in online group programs, and teaches wellness workshops in Nebraska communities and businesses.  

She has helped hundreds of women create healthier and happier lives through one-on-one and group coaching, workshops and her blog, Sweet Success.  

Connect with Sara at bit.ly/sweet-success.