To exercise or not to exercise – How office goers can stay fit during COVID- 19?
Who would have imagined a scenario of being in a lockdown because of a pandemic? Probably no one…but here we are. Humanity is faced with a virus that has shaken us to the core. However, with almost 100 crore people stuck indoors, there is a bigger crisis looming- our physical fitness. The crisis is bigger for regular office-goers.
Most office-goers I know, practice some kind of physical activity. Either they hit the gym post office hours, or they walk back from office or at least walk around the office. However, most of them are stuck at home, looking down at their laptops; they are following an unhealthy lifestyle. Given the current context, the need to keep ourselves physically fit is of prime importance. A fit body gives us the energy and the will to get up and work every day. Though, I know most office-goers are bogged down by office work and household chores and barely get time to do any kind of physical activity, but a little self-love doesn’t hurt. Keeping them in mind, here are a few Yoga poses / stretching activities that they can practice while they are on their laptops. Additionally, while performing these stretching activities make sure to practice deep breathing as this increases blood circulation, thereby reducing stress.
Remember, all the stretches or Yoga poses need to be practiced by sitting upright and keeping the spine straight.
- Wrist and Finger Stretch:
The work from home mode has surely increased the usage of mobile phones and laptops. These repetitive motions can create weakness and stiffness in the wrists and fingers. Hence this stretching activity increases the strength of wrists and fingers.
While sitting, take the fingertips of one hand into the palm of the other hand. Extend that same arm forward, at shoulder-height, and gently pull the fingers down toward the back of the wrist until a slight stretch is felt. Count to five or 10, then switch hands
2. Seated parvatasana:
Most office-goers are working seated in one place for hours and this is causing the problem of indigestion and acidity. The seated parvatasana pose helps increase blood flow to the digestive system and the respiratory system thereby keeping these two organs fit.
Take the hands forward and interlock the fingers. Turn the palms outwards and stretch out the hands in front. Now raise the hands above the head with the palms turned upwards towards the roof. Give a good stretch to the body and align the head, trunk and hands in a straight line.
3. Anulom Vilom:
Due to the lockdown, stress level among office-goers has increased multi-fold. With all the office work, household chores, they are getting stressed and to get respite from this, Anulom vilom is the perfect exercise. This ancient practice helps in the strengthening of the mind and complete relaxation. Also, since COVID-19 is a respiratory disease this is a must-practice for everyone in the family as it helps to keep the respiratory tract clear.
Sit upright with both the hands resting sideways on the knees. Close the right nostril with the right thumb and inhale slowly to fill up the lungs. Now, exhale slowly from the right nostril. Repeat the same with the left thumb and left nostril. It is essential to focus on breathing. Repeat 60 times or for 5 minutes.
4. Dancer pose:
Working from home means sitting in one place for hours. I get lots of people telling me about how their muscles are getting tight due to prolonged inactivity. Here’s what one can do; every hour, take a break for 5 minutes and do the following:
From a standing position, bend the right knee and kick the right heel toward the upper thigh. With the right hand, reach back to grab the outside or inside of the right ankle. Stand straight, as if a magnet were lifting the head toward the ceiling, and stack shoulders over hips over ankles. Press the knee down, and keep the inside of the right knee as close to the inside of the left knee as possible. Hold for a few breaths, then repeat with on left side to build flexibility and coordination throughout the lower half.
Remember these exercises can be practiced from home, while working on the laptop. Therefore, every hour or so, keep doing these in a loop.
These exercises are customized and recommended keeping in mind, those, who are currently on work from home mode. These are tough and uncertain times. It is the right preparation that will make sure we win this battle. Out of all the work we do, let us be kind to ourselves, and be kind to our body because a fit and healthy body gives us to power to fight the current uncertainty.
Thus, preparing ourselves is the best way to beat this –Kyunki agar taiyaari sahi ho, toh jeet pakki hai! – An article in association with ICICI Prudential Life, my trusted life insurance partner.
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