Hard work is the biggest contributor to success and success begets more success. Everything may be going well, when suddenly there is a nagging pain, or the result of a periodic health check that disturbed your peace. Whatever the kind of work one does, if it involves sitting for long hours, one has to be careful. Starting from the hips, lower back, middle back, and upper back, to the shoulders, arms, neck, and stomach, everything needs to be taken care of. The body needs to be in motion at least once in 40 minutes.
What are the things one needs to worry about?
- If there is consistent weight gain, the body will experience strain, especially in the joints, muscles, tendons, and ligaments, and slowly, stomach-related disorders will crop up. Weight gain is the first change which one can notice. Clothes will feel a little tight. One will experience back pain due to the excess weight around the waistline. The knees and ankle joints will be unable to deal with the increased burden on them and will starting hurting. It is like walking around with a heavy bag the whole day.
- Sitting for long hours in the same posture reduces blood flow in the body, resulting primarily in bad posture and ultimately lethargy and lack of alertness. Reduced or limited blood flow means prana is not reaching the whole body. Our body is like a temple where positive thoughts dwell. Just like we clean our houses regularly and open all windows for fresh air and light, our body also craves for energy. Lack of energy will make the body slow and lethargic, resulting in poor productivity.
- Lack of sunlight and sitting indoors in a cold, damp environment causes muscles to stiffen. Winter is nice when it lasts for two to three months — we can keep ourselves warm and eat warm food and feel good about it. If winter goes on for any longer we have to deal with it with more thought. If our workplace is situated in closed, air conditioned premises…yes to start with it feels good, but eventually muscles will stiffen, and care needs to be taken to regularly stretch and mobilise the whole body.
- A new car battery works well and is quick. If this has to last for a long time, maintenance is a must. Likewise, our body needs to rest well to recover from mental stress and body pain. Lack of sleep due to stress or pain in the body will result in a dull, slow beginning to a new day as one is not given enough time to repair and recharge the body.
- Sitting for long hours will result in shutting down of brains, a dip in energy levels, and depression. This means that one is seeing, but the brain is not registering; the ears are hearing but the mind is not assimilating. Slowly but surely, all sensory organs are becoming dull. Quick action needs to be taken before things get worse.
- Other possible problems include ankles swelling, varicose veins, deep vein blood clots, brittle bones, and heart ailments. These are serious concerns which can stay for a lifetime.
The solution to all these problems is the regular mobilisation of all muscles, and most importantly, the practice of yoga asanas.
- Marjari Asana: Helps make the spine more flexible and release muscle spasms. Very basic and effective to increase the range of movement of the spine.
- Ardha Matsyendrasana: Corrects bad posture, indigestion, diabetes, stomach disorders, and shoulder stiffness. This asana can range from very basic to advance.
- Shalabasana: Helps strengthen and align the back and relieve lower back pain. Very good asana to practise every day.
- Chakrasana: Increases flexibility of the spine, opens up lungs, and helps achieve flat stomach. It is a very good asana to defy age-related problems.
- Parshva Konasana: Corrects bad posture and activates stomach organs. Again a very basic posture that has a lot of benefits for the body.
- Prasarita Padottanasana: Opens up the hips and hamstrings, tones the lower body, and helps bring in lots of energy. One will never feel low in body and mind.
- Vriksasana: Opens up the hips, stabilises the lower body, increases the balance of mind, body and spirit.
- Virabhadrasana: Strengthens the lower body, helps lose weight, and gives a good shape to your legs and makes the body like a warrior’s.
- Baddha Konasana: Removes stiffness from hips, increases flexibility of upper and lower body, and helps align all important chakras.
A dry twig breaks very easily while a soft branch bends and gets back to where it was.
With stress, stiffness, and disease of mind, body and spirit, one can lose flexibility, leading to damage or breakage of body. A flexible spine is a young body no matter what your age or hair colour indicate. Practise yoga regularly and yet sit at a desk and enjoy your job. Bring yoga into your life.