12 yoga poses you can do anywhere – Cleveland Clinic


Afternoon fall? Stressed about your workload? Need ways to de-stress or refocus after juggling work or helping your kids learn online?

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According to yoga therapist Judi Bar, it only takes a few minutes to reduce stress and refresh your mind by doing yoga exactly where you’re reading this now. On your chair, at your desk, anywhere.

And it’s really good for you. “Stress can make you sick,” she says. “Yoga can help you get through an overly programmed or stressful day by lowering your blood pressure, increasing serotonin, and lowering cortisol. Yoga also helps you focus and release tension in your body.

Try these 12 poses at your desk to help you achieve better results for yourself, your work, and your family.

1. Neck circles

Alignment points: Imagine a clock right in front of you and turn your nose around the clock. Breathe slowly, inhale and exhale easily. Reverse the senses. If you feel pain, stop!

Advantages of the installation: Softens and relaxes the neck muscles. Relate movement to breathing.

2. The posture of the ventilator

Alignment points: Sit up straight on the front edge of your chair with your feet firmly planted to the floor. Make sure your back is off the chair. Watch to make sure your spine is lengthened. Your heart is in the center with your chin moving forward. Pull your shoulder blades back. If your shoulders are tight or you feel pain, keep your arms low on the chair. Breathe deeply here for at least 3-5 breaths.

Advantages of the installation: This simple pose works like a heart opener. Stimulates the immune system. Opens the upper respiratory muscles. Stretch shoulders and arms. Increases awareness of the action of the shoulder blades. Helps in relaxation which can aid digestion. Stretch your belly. Relax your mind.

3. Cat and cow curls on chair (or on the floor)

Alignment points: See the video for the chair option. For the floor option, place your hands and knees to create a table position. Keeping your back extended, line up your knees directly under your hips and your wrists, elbows and shoulders stacked on top of each other. Look at the ground. For the cat pose, exhale, round your spine toward the ceiling, and release your head and pelvis toward the floor. For the cow pose, inhale, reverse the curve of your spine until the belly points towards the ground, raising your head and pelvis to the sky. Repeat at least 3 times.

While doing the cow pose, make sure your chin is not protruding forward to avoid compressing your cervical spine.

Advantages of the installation: Softens and lubricates the spine and muscles. Creates space between the vertebrae and increases circulation. Stretches the secondary respiratory muscles to help breathe easier.

4. Shoulder rolls

Alignment points: Make sure your back is off the chair. If you have a block to rest behind the chair in your lower back, it can help you support a high spine. Draw circles with your elbows in both directions. Breathe with each movement.

Advantages of the installation: Softens and relaxes the muscles of the shoulder girdle. Connects your breathing to movement. Warms the synovial fluid in the shoulder. Helps to release tension.

5. Lateral seated elbow

Alignment points: Make sure your back is off the chair. Sit up straight and place one hand firmly in the seat of the chair for added stability. Lift and raise your opposite arm, keeping the shoulder of that arm in line with the other. Watch to make sure there is no sagging in your arm or spine. Breathe in and out at least 3 times on each side.

Advantages of the installation: Help your breathing. Stretches your rib cage and lengthens the side of your body

6. Laying the hippocampus

Alignment points: Make sure your front foot is on the ground. Drop your outer knee and let it hang down from the chair. Keep the top of your foot lightly on the ground, or flex your toes so that the ball of your foot is pressing for more stability. Hold onto the chair and lean back. Take 3 or 4 deep, easy breaths.

Advantages of the installation: Stretches the hip flexors, psoas, quads, and torso muscles. Helps support lower back health.

7. Number 4 Pose

Alignment points: Sit up straight on the front edge of the chair, toes facing forward and feet flat on the floor. Keep your ankles below your knees. Cross one ankle over your shin below or above the knee. Or if above your knee, place a supporting foot below the supporting knee. Lie down and lean forward with an extended back, starting with your core (and chin). Hold 3 to 5 deep breaths. Repeat on the other side.

Advantages of the installation: Stretches the muscles of the back and hips, especially the periformis muscle.

8. Sitting mountain pose

Alignment points: Keep your spine aligned with your head, neck, and spine in the same row. Tuck your chin in a bit and gently lift your shoulders up, back, and lower back. Keep your knees in front of your hips, with your ankles below the knees and all 10 toes facing forward. Inhale and exhale several times. Pay attention to your breathing when you start to feel relaxed and centered.

Advantages of the installation: Increases awareness of your posture in general, especially the spine. Strengthens all the core muscles of the torso and leaves more space for better breathing, digestion and overall allows organs to function optimally.

9. Knee to chest

Alignment points: Sit up straight, firmly on your chair with your feet sunk into the ground for added stability. Lift both hands below the right knee up to your chest, then reverse, lifting your left knee up to your chest. Remember to sit up straight and breathe with each movement.

Advantages of the installation: Relieve tension in the back and hips. A gentle squeezing action helps the digestive system.

10. Seated child pose

Alignment points: Sit up straight and lean forward, resting your forearms on your thighs. Tuck the chin, head, neck, and spine in a long line. Place an elbow on your leg and use your hand to support your forehead. Breathe in deeply and exhale 3 to 5 full breaths.

Advantages of the installation: Releases tension in the lower back and relaxes the nervous system.

11. Torsion of the seated spine

Alignment points: Roll over to the side of your chair. Keep the feet on the ground with good alignment across the joints. Raise your arms up to shoulder height (think of the height of the fist bump) keeping your shoulders parallel, and with a high spine, turn to the back of the chair and rest your hands on the chair. Hold 3 to 5 breaths. Repeat on the other side.

Advantages of the installation: Stretches the torso, ribs and respiratory muscles. Massages internal organs.

12. Groin stretch

Alignment points: Make sure your back is off the chair. Watch to make sure that the spine is not bent and that it is lengthened. Move your heart center and chin forward. Hold at least 3 breaths.

Advantages of the installation: Align shoulders. Stretches and strengthens the back and core muscles. Stretch the inner thighs and open the hips. Helps to balance tension in the groin, which impacts the knees and lower back. Increase awareness.

“If you can take a few minutes each day to do these simple stretches, your body and mind will progress towards a healthy balance and promote good health down the road,” says Bar.