We all want to stay fit and flexible, calm, cool and in charge. One way to do this is by incorporating yoga into your busy day. Instead of thinking of your morning or evening yoga class as the only way to keep yoga a prominent portion of your daily schedule, you can do yoga in small increments throughout the day. Here are five ways to do yoga, all day, every day even when you are busy:
Take Deep Yogic Breaths
You can deep breathe when you are driving, when you are standing in line at the grocery store, or when you are sitting on a conference call or in a business meeting. Not only does deep breathing calm your heart rate and soothe the nervous system, it also calms the people around you. You can even influence the respiratory rate of others, by slowing your own respiratory rate. Deep breathing brings more oxygen to the brain, too, so you’ll be smarter and more eloquent when you have to speak to clients in your next business meeting or other moms at the local PTA.
Stretch it Out at Your Desk
Don’t think that just because you can’t get on all fours on your yoga mat at your office, or don’t have space in your living room means you can’t still get some great stretches in. Try a seated twist (Marichyasana) in your office chair, or do just Gomukhasana (Cow Face Pose) to stretch your upper body. You can also do backbends and side stretches like swaying palm tree, whether seated or standing. Just doing a simple back arch or seated cat cow, can also stretch tired muscles and eliminate both physical and mental fatigue.
Many aspects of yoga have more to do with changing your perspective than doing a pretzel-like pose. Try sitting in gratitude for a few moments between conference calls and emails. Just focus for two minutes on all the things you already have in your life. This precept from Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras can help to create more peace and abundance in your life.
Practice a Five-Minute Meditation
You can calm your mind and make your workday more effective, allowing problems to even work themselves out when you take just five minutes to have singular, and calm focus. There are hundreds of meditation techniques you can try, including focusing on a mantra or a lit candle, but the easiest one to practice in a hectic day is just concentrating on the breath. It goes with you everywhere you go, after all. Count your breaths, each inhale and exhale being a single cycle, or simply notice the air leaving and entering your chest and diaphragm, the movement of your belly or the temperature of the air as it enters and leaves your nostrils. Notice if your mind tries to ruminate on other things besides the breath, and for just five minutes, gently bring it back to the breath over and over again.
Do Yoga on Your Lunch Break
Even if you can only try a few poses, due to space constraints or you can only remember how to do a few asana from your latest yoga class, try finding a quiet place in a park or the office atrium and do a few gentle yoga asana. Your body will feel so much better once you head back to the office, or to your household chores, and your mind will feel more expansive.
Do you have ideas about how you can practice yoga all day, everyday? We’d love to hear your thoughts.
Editor’s note: This is a guest post offered by YOME . YOME which was founded by Faye Rousso aggregates and features a FREE collection of hundreds of yoga videos including meditation techniques that were posted by the best yoga teaches in the world. YOME enables you to combine a yoga practice within your personal routine. You can practice yoga poses wherever and whenever you want, without trying to make it to a specific class on time or rush through traffic. Connect with YOME on: Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, Google+…
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Photo credit: lululemon athletica on flickr…