“Yoga is the journey of the self, through the self, to the self” – Bhagavad Gita
Yoga derived from the word Yuji meaning union is a well-known practice that connects the mind, body and soul using various poses, meditation and disciplined breathing. The word found its first mention in the oldest Indian scripture – the Rig Veda. This practice has been prevalent for centuries and for the reason that it is extremely beneficial to one’s health.
This practice is beneficial to the human body in various ways like healing chronic pain in the lower back, arthritis as well as helping manage stress, improving sleep quality and providing overall improvements in health.
Forms of Yoga – One for all, all for one
The advent of yoga took place in India centuries ago and ever since has proven to be one of the most effortless ways to find one attaining mental and physical balance. Yoga is not just one form that is practiced but has various ways that people follow.
Hatha Yoga – This form of Yoga consists of physically demanding postures that are good for beginners and have a very classic approach to breathing and exercises. This helps a person take the first step into Yoga and its benefits.
Ashtanga Yoga – In this particular form, one can find multiple postures that help in providing a proper and effective workout to an individual’s body and mind. Ashtanga means eight limbs and yoga is a process of union. It is a combination of eight steps including various body postures, breathing and meditation practice with the goal of controlling the mind.
There are many others that are based on the preferences from person to person. Moving ahead, let’s take a look at examples of a few simple yoga poses that comes with multiple benefits for everyone.
Beginner Yoga Poses
Vrikshasana or the Tree Pose – This pose is extremely popular and for the reason that it is also extremely simple. One needs to stand with one foot raised and crossed on the other leg as demonstrated below. This particular pose improves balance and strengthens one’s legs and back.
Trikonasana or the Triangle Pose – This particular posture focuses on the legs, torso and hips. In order to execute this, one has to stand with the legs slightly apart and bend forwards while making sure that they are looking up towards the ceiling. The triangle pose is extremely beneficial as it relieves backache and acidity.
Balasan or the Child’s Pose – A brilliant pose that helps fight insomnia and lengthens the lower back is especially beneficial to those who work for long hours on the desk. This puts a lot of stress on the lower spine causing fatigue and backaches. This pose is extremely simple as all you need to do is sit on the floor in vajrasan and slowly while outstretching your arms bend down until your arms touch the floor and are parallel to it.
Bhujangasan or the Cobra Pose – If you require something that provides instant relief for the back while even giving some work to the arms and abdomens, the cobra pose is perfect for it. Along with providing strength to the spinal cord, which takes up the majority weight of the human body in a sitting position, it also improves blood circulation.
With a combination of breathing, there is also an equal supply of fresh oxygen that is circulated throughout the body. This is also very simple as you need to lay on the ground on your stomach and using your arms raise your upper body up to face the wall. Keep in mind that the back should arch back which is giving it a good stretch.
Yoga at the Desk – A Refresher for the Workplace
The world today has people sitting at their desks for the longest period of time and this requires a lot of strength for the back. According to some studies, looking at a screen can add over 60 extra pounds of pressure to the spine. The entire body by the end of the day becomes consumed by fatigue. You can avoid this by taking quick breaks to give your body a hint of movement as being stationary for a long time can take a toll on the bone structure as well as the body’s metabolism. The below yoga postures are at their simplest best and can be done from the comforts of your desk.
Wrist and Finger Stretch – Sit comfortably and with your arms raised comfortably, stretch the fingers and wrist slightly backward. Slowly extend it as much as possible and then gradually let go. Repeating this on both sides won’t require too much time and will give you a break from the continuous string of typing.
Seated Side Stretch – This pose is as simple as the previous and one that can be done during break time. While being seated raise one arm over the head and bend your body towards the opposite direction. This move helps in giving some movement to the stationery spine, thus helping preserve its flexibility.
Dancer’s Pose – In the midst of the ongoing break, you can include this one which will involve you standing up. Then, raise your right leg and bend it towards your back while attempting to press the ankles backward. This gives a good stretch to the legs and the ankles making it a solution for stiffness in the feet.
Seated Twist – On your chair, sit upright and twist your body, only going waist upwards in the opposite direction. Hold this for a couple of seconds and repeat on the opposite side as well. This is mainly beneficial for good circulation and releasing tension from the lower back. It also aids the maintenance of good posture.
The popularity of yoga has soared in the past few years due to widespread awareness of its extraordinary benefits. This portrays how essential it is to include at least a 20 min yoga routine into the daily schedule and have it benefit everyone’s lives.
– Urvasi S Talekar.