It is no secret that with the wake of the pandemic, so many of us have been at home a lot more than usual.
This also meant that we had to work from home and much of our movement had been restricted.
But even before the pandemic, too many of us have spent a big part of our day working from our desk, adding to the number of hours we spend sitting and working.
Sitting too much has a number of health risks attached to it. It is linked with increased risk of chronic heart problems, obesity, diabetes and some cancers.
It has also been dubbed as the new smoking
Has the hours of sitting too much manifested into a back pain you never had? Does your body feel stiff and lethargic?
What if I told you that you can find the remedy in back pain yoga asanas?
Let's kiss back pain and work from home posture problems goodbye with these 10 yoga poses for beginners.
The names of the yoga poses and their benefits are as follows:
1) DOWNWARD FACING DOG (ADHO MUKHA SVANASANA)
It is one of the most common yoga poses by far. I am sure you must have heard of this yoga pose before.
To get to this position, all you have to do is form an inverted V by bending on your legs and arms.
Spread out your fingers on the mat and maintain a hip width separation of your legs. Your hips must be completely stretched outwards.
Once in position, the pose is maintained for 30 to 60 seconds.
Quite the contrary to the normal hand resting on mouse pose, is it not?
Benefits : This yoga pose helps to stretch the hamstrings and calves, as well as it strengthens the arms and legs. It is one of the go-to yoga poses for back aches.
So, how about you try this yoga pose with this cool ecstatic t-shirt for yoga printed with a downward-facing dog literally during your sessions?
2) CAT AND COW POSE (CHAKRAVAKASANA)
A rather intriguing name for a yoga pose I must say but anyways here is how you can perform the cat and cow pose.
First you must get on to the tabletop position by bending on your knees and arms.
Maintain a neutral spine.
Here comes the fun part.
While inhaling, arch your back upwards and bend your head low, in Cat position.
On exhaling, curve your back inwards and stretch out your chest while lifting your head, in Cow position. Meow and Moo has never made better sense. (Teehee)
These two positions can be altered three to five times all the while focusing on your breath.
Benefits : The cat and cow pose is THE pose for when your body needs a break and is the ideal yoga pose for back pain.
It also helps to improve your posture.
3) CHILD’S POSE (BALASANA)
Are you looking for a yoga pose to calm your mind? What question am I even asking? YES!
Here I have the perfect pose for you. Brace yourself for the Child’s pose. Here is how you can do it.
Lay on your knees with your toes touching together.Your knees must be separated by some space to form a V in between.
Then bend over with your chest touching your knees, head down on the mat and arms either stretch out straight or on the side of your legs.
Key to this pose is to focus on your breathing and stay in the position for as long as you can.
Benefits : As stated earlier, this yoga pose helps to calm the brain and relieve stress and fatigue. It also gently stretches the hips, thighs and ankles.
4) LOW LUNGE POSE (ANJANEYASANA)
Low Lunge yoga pose can be done in continuation with Downward Facing Dog pose.
Also, did you check that t-shirt I told you about earlier?
Once in position, bring your right leg between your hands and stretch your left leg behind with the toes facing the mat.
When you have acquired a comfortable position, lift your arms to the side and bring them upwards to your body.
Tip : While doing this yoga pose, straighten your shoulders and tilt your head back and look up (the sky's the limit, buddy)
Benefits : This lower back pain yoga pain stretches the thighs and groins and opens the chest.
It is perfect for alleviating back pain from sitting on a chair for too long.
Back pain, who? Never heard of it.
5) LEGS UP THE WALL (VIPARITA KARANI)
On days when you do not feel like being on your feet and arms and finding your balance seems like something you’d rather not do.
Here is the perfect yoga pose for you.
Fun fact : “Viparita” means inverted while “karani” means in action. This yoga pose is as simple as it’s name.
All you have to do is, spread out your yoga mat, and lay down on your back.
Next crawl legs up the wall and move your hips as close to the wall as possible.
Voila, you will find yourself in a L position.
Once in position, focus on your breathing and yoga your lower back pain away.
Benefits : An easy yoga pose that helps to relieve headaches, menstrual cramps and yes, eases your lower back pain.
6) MOUNTAIN POSE (TADASANA)
The mountain pose is one of the most fundamental standing yoga poses.
Though it seems really simple, there is a lot that goes into it.
Don’t worry, I am going to break it down for you.
To get in this yoga pose, stand with your feet parallel to each other keeping your hips, knees and ankles evenly spaced.
Next, lift your hands over your head with your thumbs facing downwards and gently bend backwards.
Once you get into this position, you will feel a stretch along the back of your spine. That is when you know you have done it right.
Benefits : It is one of the best yoga poses for good posture.
Besides that, the mountain yoga pose helps to improve focus and concentration, strengthens thighs, knees and ankles.
Who knew back pain could be so easy to tacke?
7) STANDING FORWARD POSE (UTTANASANA)
If you are a new yogi, then this yoga pose must be very familiar to you.
Starting with the Mountain pose, all you have to do next is to fold your torso over your legs hingeing from the hips.
Bring your hands over your head.
Your palm may press flat on the mat or just touch the mat (no one is judging, to be honest I cannot reach my arms to the ground till now)
While you are at it focus on your breathing; with every exhale extend your torso downward without rounding your back.
Benefits: It is not for no reason that this pose is taught at the start of every yogi’s journey as it is associated with many benefits.
Some of these benefits are, it helps to relieve tension in the spine, neck and back (9 to 5 desk workers, I am looking at you).
It helps lower blood pressure and reduces stress, anxiety, depression and fatigue.
8) CHAIR POSE (UTKATASANA)
Quite ironic how “chair” pose can help relieve damage done by sitting on a chair for too long. But, hey the universe works in mysterious ways.
Resembling a deep squat, the chair yoga pose works your legs, back and ankles.
So, to get into the chair pose all you have to do is imagine that you are sitting on an imaginary chair.
That is it!
Just kidding (not really) but here is how you do the chair pose.
Stand with your feet parallel to each other and then bring your hands forward with palms facing the floor.
Remember, your elbows must not bend.
Next, bend your knees and bring your hips out, eventuating the length of your spine.
Hold this position and breathe in and breathe out.
Benefits : Chair yoga pose helps to strengthen your spine and lower back, giving relief to the hours you have spent sitting too much.
It also helps to strengthen your core, thighs and ankles while also building cardiovascular health.
Sounds like killing five birds with one stone now, does it not?
9) COBRA POSE (BHUJANGASANA)
Ready for another pose to tackle your back pain? The cobra yoga pose is one to try. The cobra pose is also great to relieve stress from a day’s stressful work.
I promise you won’t be crawling by the end of this!
Here is how you can get into the cobra pose.
Lay down on your stomach with your feet and heels touching each other and your head on the ground.
Next, place your palms on the ground in such a way that they are under your shoulders.
Then take a deep breath and slowly lift your head, chest and abdomen while keeping your navel glued to the ground.
In the meantime, pull your troso back with the support of your arms. Make sure to put equal pressure on both arms.
Woah, that seems like a lot to take in for a seemingly straightforward yoga pose. I will tell you what, here is a striking printed t-shirt that can help you get in Cobra yoga pose.
Benefits : The cobra yoga pose can help improve flexibility of the upper and middle back, relief neck pain and improves blood circulation (which is hugely affected from sitting too much)
10) BOUND ANGLE POSE (BADDHA KONASANA)
Bound angle yoga pose is a super easy yoga pose for beginners that targets the hips and groin muscles.
Here is how you can get into the butterfly pose (now don’t go flapping your wings just yet)
Bring yourself to a sitting position on your mat and bring the soles of your feet together, with your knees out and flat on either side.
Try to bring your feet as close to your body as you can.
Your feet should look like an open book. You can also interlock your hands over your feet in a yogi toe lock.
All you have to do now is pull your shoulders behind your ears and elongate your spine.
Benefit : This yoga pose is great at working with your hip muscles and improves general circulation.
Now, you can flap your fly butterfly (hope to see you again back in session)
Can yoga be practised only when you are on a yoga mat?
No, absolutely not. That is one factor that makes yoga a best friend to everyone.
So have there been times when your working hours prevented you from having some yoga time?
Well, no worries even if that is the case.
Here are some yoga poses you can try out while sitting on your desk (pretending to be interested in the ongoing presentation):
- Single Pigeon - This is an easy yoga pose to try out while you are sitting on your chair. All you have to do is cross your right ankle over your left knee and flex your right toes. Sit up tall and breathe in and breathe out while holding this pose for a few minutes. Switch sides when done.
- Cross legged - For this position, all you have to do is sit in a simple cross legged position as if you were sitting on a floor. Start with your right shin in front and then switch sides.
Tips to prevent back pain from sitting too much:
Here are three simple tips to keep in mind whenever your back starts to draw your attention from sitting too much:
- Change your centre of gravity : Sitting in one position for too long can make your body feel rigid and stiff. So, when sitting for long hours, you can sit way back in the chair with your legs at 90 degrees and then change up by sitting near the edge with your legs stretched out.
- Remember to move your spine : Every now and then, rotate your body and twist your spine in each direction to relax your back muscles.
- Shoulders out : Broaden your chest and open up your shoulders. A few good shoulder rolls can do the trick as well.
Are you in balance yet?
Woah, that is a lot of people.
With work-from-home being the new normal in many countries, the desk culture has taken everybody’s health concern to another level.
And it's safe to say that most of us have confided in yoga as the remedy.
A study done to see if there was a direct increase in back pain post pandemic, found that 49% of 388 respondents experienced back pain since the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, of which a majority of them claimed to have never had the problem before.
If you are looking for yoga poses for back aches or best yoga poses for good posture, there is always a yoga pose for you to try.
Surely they can be all that it takes to curb your back pain from the countless hours of sitting too much.
Pandemic or not, I can say one thing, yoga life is not going anywhere and yes, yes ,yes it is here to stay.
So, what are your favorite yoga poses so far?
How has yoga helped you tackle desk culture? Let us know in the comments, we’d love to hear from you.
Until next time, let us stay heavily meditated.
1) What are the benefits of yoga on mental health?
A number of studies have been carried to look upon the positive impacts of yoga and mental health.
Some forms of yoga like Sudarashankriya, Sahajyoga, yogasanas, have shown promising results in the treatment of depression.
Yoga, either by itself or as a supportive treatment has shown good results in treatment of anxiety, insomnia, schizophrenia, and ADHD in children.
2) What are some easy yoga poses for beginners?
Five easy yoga poses for beginners are:
- Mountain Pose (Tadasana)
- Forward Fold (Uttanasana)
- Plank pose (Uttihita Chaturanga)
- Downward - Facing Dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana)
- Child’s Pose (Balasana)
3) What are some yoga poses for students to increase concentration?
4 yoga poses for students to help improve concentration:
- Fish Pose (Matsyasana)
- Diamond Pose (Vajrasana)
- Hero Pose (Virasana)
- Sun Salutations (Suryanamaskar)
4) How many hours of sitting is too much?
Sitting too much has a number of health risks attached to it, including high blood pressure, high blood pressure, increased cholesterol levels and increased body fat.
But, how much is too much?
An analysis of 13 studies showed that sitting for more than 8 hours a day with no physical activity poses high health concerns.
- Fitness exercise - webmd
- The dangers of sitting
- The dangers of sitting a lot - Harvard health
- Yoga desk job - Huffington post
- 5 yoga poses for people who sit a lot - Yoga fit studios
- Yoga poses to combat sitting all day
- Best yoga poses for people who have a desk job - Popsugar
- Simple yoga poses for people who sit all day
- Yoga journal
ABOUT OUR STAR AUTHOR
Oracle Wahlang is a Botanist by major and a curious learner by nature. A self-labeled introvert who enjoys learning new things and having discussions with friends. She enjoys reading, sketching, painting, and yes, researching.
She also sometimes like to think that she clicks good photographs.