How does sitting at a desk all day affect health?
‘Sitting is the new smoking’ is more true than most of us realize. 9-5 (or longer) desk jobs are slowly and silently causing a dent in our backs - quite literally!
Research links a highly sedentary lifestyle with a shorter life span with the increased risk of chronic diseases like heart disease and diabetes, among other health problems. Stress is the most common by-product of demanding jobs, but sitting is not very far behind. Tightness and discomfort in the hips, legs, back, neck and shoulder is common. Sitting hunched over our laptops all day throws a healthy posture right out of the window too. Not far behind is how we bend forward or look down constantly when on our smartphones. A misaligned spine is only the beginning of spinal conditions and other problems that follow.
The new normal is here to stay
The raging pandemic also brought with it the need to work from home, causing us to resort to our couches or dining chairs. Far from ergonomic or appropriate when using a laptop, this has further altered our spinal health. These physical conditions also lower our productivity and focus level drastically.
How does yoga help improve spinal health?
Yoga not only helps us maintain spinal health, but also improves an unhealthy spine. What we don’t often realize is we are always bending forward through the day. Simple practices are extremely beneficial.
Type of Yoga Asanas that improve Spinal Health
Stretch and release tightness that has collected in the back and sides of the waist. Twists are also beneficial in massaging the abdomen and opening up the chest region, inducing better breathing too. This releases toxins and tension that’s accumulated due to the stress of our work.
These asanas work as a counter effect on the spine, correcting alignment, stretching and stimulating muscles, and toning spinal nerves. This induces better blood flow to the region, keeping the spine supple and healthy.
Stretches and certain basic practices open up the hips, thighs and groin which works as a great antidote. It releases the tightness in various regions, stimulating the muscles and inducing blood flow.
Take a look at this simple routine you can do between work or when taking a short break.
Yoga also helps release stress, which automatically releases tension from various parts of the body like the upper and lower back, neck and the mind. It stimulates the digestive organs, which is also often impacted due to stress and irregular eating habits.
Practice yoga regularly with an experienced teacher to keep your spine healthy and strong.