Work throws people off balance. Office workers sit at a desk for long hours, skipping lunch breaks and taking shallow breaths. Corporate yoga opportunities help people see their work in a new way. While our culture tells us we should feel that our jobs are a burden, yoga teaches us to see our work as the way we connect to our community. Corporate yoga is a great opportunity for businesses to help their employees maintain a healthy lifestyle and increase productivity.
Corporate wellness programs can take many forms. The program can offer employees yoga classes at allotted times during the work day. Or, on a smaller scale, a company might offer a recorded guided meditation for employees to access any time they feel they needed to. Yoga for the office specifically focuses in on connecting yourself to the present, being in tune with your surroundings and learning ways to cope with job-related stress.
Taking a yoga break during your work day creates a mental break from the stress of an impending meeting or a quickly approaching deadline. Yoga’s focus on breathing and movement allows you to mentally disconnect from the world for a while.
Improved concentration, decision making skills, multitasking, and productivity are just some of the benefits for both the employee and the company. Some companies found the environment around the office so improved that they had less employee turnover and better customer service.
Outside of taking a break from stress and improving the office environment, corporate yoga helps practitioners to focus on the present. This helps by giving you control over your reactions to stressful situations. If your meeting takes an unexpected and unpleasant turn, you can get past your immediate stress reaction and focus on solutions and keep the meeting moving forward.
The benefits of yoga to our overall health are innumerable. We know that working, even at a desk job, can be hard on our bodies. Head, neck and back strain, carpal tunnel syndrome, arthritis, high blood pressure and work related injuries from repetitive motion are all issues that are can be caused by our desk jobs. The asanas stretch the muscles and give our bodies a break from from our desk and alleviate these problems we might be facing.
Another one of the big components in yoga’s value as an addition to a healthy lifestyle is its role in stress reduction. High levels of stress weaken our immune systems and leave us susceptible to colds, headaches, insomnia and more. Basically, stress causes sick days, so providing yoga at the work place will lead to healthier employees. Healthier employees means fewer sick days which means lower overall health insurance premiums
Yoga At Work
Corporate yoga is a growing trend all across the United States. You can find it all over Silicon Valley. Google funds classes as an employee benefit. Twitter offers both yoga and Pilates classes to their employees for free. General Mills has infused most of its corporate culture with mindfulness and meditation. These massive businesses have tried the corporate yoga path, tracked its effect on employees and noticed that it saved them thousands of dollars in health care costs.
If you’re suffering from the work day blues and think that corporate yoga can help your company, start the change by talking to someone in Human Resources. They’re the ones looking for ways to create benefits for employees. Or if you’re looking for a quick yoga session to get you through, check out this video on yoga at your desk. Enjoy!