When most people hear the word “yoga”, they envision athletic or super flexible people in colorful pants doing pretzel-like postures. Many workplaces are starting to offer yoga as an exercise health perk for their employees, and don’t get me wrong: this is good.
However, what I do is different.
When I say “I teach yoga”, I mean that I teach a combination of physical movement, breathing practices, and mental techniques designed to achieve a specific goal. Why? Because this combination helps employees remain energized, relaxed, focused, and attentive throughout the workday.
And the effects are cumulative.
The goal of physical movement is to relieve the body of those niggling aches and pains caused by repetitive movements and poor body positioning, which are a mental and energetic distraction to those who experience them (e.g. the low back, neck/shoulder strain, etc. that often come with working in office environments). Physically, yoga also improves posture and breathing function, which increases your employees’ energy, and alleviates the fatigue that comes from long hours at the office. Because the movements I teach are gentle, anyone can do them, regardless of strength or flexibility.
The breathing techniques I teach work by engaging the parasympathetic nervous system. In other words, they activate the “relaxation response,” which counteract and balance the negative effects of stress, which most of your employees likely experience every day from work, home, and in between. When employees can return easily to the relaxation response (we call it “resiliency”), your employees can work with optimal efficiency and clarity.
If some of your employees are dealing with difficult times or emotions inside or outside of the office (e.g. anxiety from looming deadlines or children’s busy schedules, depression over caring for aging parents, etc.) yoga helps clear and focus their minds, bringing your employees back into the present moment of their work day. Some people call this mindfulness meditation:
The main business case for mindfulness is that if you’re more focused on the job, you’ll become a better leader. —Mr. [William] George, Goldman Sachs board member
In sum, a complete practice of yoga reduces the devastating effects of chronic, low-level stress that impact your employees’ ability to work well and work smart.
If your employees gained just 1 hour more per day in productivity because they felt better, what would that do? Would they make just one more sale? Would they be more patient with customers? More present with colleagues? Happier to stay with your company? What is that worth to your business?
Common Concerns about Workplace Classes:
- You will see the value of the program. Classes are designed to be practical; they are based on measurable goals and outcomes, and will meet the needs and honor the constraints of YOUR business. Just as your company is unique, so should its wellness practice be.
- You don’t need much time to rejuvenate your employees. We’ll start and end all classes on time so people can get back to work, even if that means a class is 30 minutes. And BTW, a 30 minute class can and does incorporate all the components I mentioned earlier!
- You don’t need a large dedicated space. In fact, employees don’t even have to leave their chairs. These classes can be adapted and done anywhere.
Have a different concern? Contact me and we’ll discuss it.