6 yoga poses to stay focused when working from home
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Looking to stay focused and productive while working from home? Yoga is linked to stress relief and a more focused mind which makes it a great way to start your day. These yoga poses focus on increasing respiration and blood circulation while releasing physical and mental tension to energize your body and awaken your mind for the work day.
So, push the couch aside, roll out the yoga mat, and get ready to conquer your work day.
Total Sequence: 6 minutes to 8.5 minutes. Repeat poses 2 through 5 three times (recommended)
Comfortable Pose (Siddhasana) - Hold for 1 minute.
This is a great pose to begin with as you focus on calming your mind. Learning to slow your thoughts helps control impulses and distractions which helps keep you focused and productive. You should feel the stretch in your hips and back. Those who spend a lot of time in chairs can find this pose quite refreshing.
- Sit upright with feet under opposite knee (criss-cross applesauce)
- Make sure your shoulders are in line and your back is straight.
- Place hands on knees, palms facing up
- Close eyes and breath deeply and slowly. Inhale for 3 seconds, exhale for 3 seconds.
- Roll your head around
- Reach one arm overhead towards the opposite side and stretch your torso
- Reach both arms out in front as you bend over your legs
Camel Pose (Ustrasana) - Hold for 15 to 30 seconds. Repeat with sequence.
Free your heart and find relief. This pose stretches the front of your body from your hip flexors to your neck. As you open your heart to the sky, feel your chest expand and respiration increase. This pose brings energy throughout the body and can help fight anxiety and fatigue.
- From standing, kneel with knees hip width apart.
- Press the tops of your feet to the mat.
- Place hands on the sacrum of your back and lean torso back, pushing your hips forward.
- Slowly reach each hand to your heels, one at a time. (Feeling tight? Keep hands on sacrum)
- Drop head back if you feel comfortable.
- Focus on opening your chest and breathing. Inhale for 3 seconds, exhale for 3 seconds.
- Release from pose and take child’s pose to relax back.
- Bend one leg to butt
- Extend arms out behind you
- Extend one leg out in front of you
Downward Facing Dog (Adho Mukha Shvanasana) - Hold for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Repeat throughout a sequence.
The bend in this pose allows more blood to flow to your brain as your head hangs, helping you feel more lively and focused. Stretching your legs after sitting down for an extended period of time boosts blood circulation and sparks energy throughout your body. This stretch should be felt in your hamstrings, calves, back and shoulders.
- From standing, reach arms to toes
- Walk hands out shoulder width apart until your back is straight. Your back, head, and arms should all be aligned.
- Keep legs hip width apart and straight (Feeling tight? Bend legs and lift heels as you feel comfortable)
- Breathe! Inhale for 3 seconds, exhale for 3 seconds.
- Rise to your toes, alternating each foot
- Hold one leg up while keeping your hips in line (3-legged downward facing dog)
- Bend one knee in towards your heart while rising to your toes on the opposite leg
Warrior II (Virabhadrasana II) - Hold for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Repeat on the opposite leg.
A staple to many yoga sequences, this pose allows you to let go of tensions while breathing deep for serenity. Imagine your tension leaving your mind and flowing out towards your fingertips. Releasing stress can help you focus on important tasks. You should feel the stretch in your hips and your spine as you lengthen towards the sky.
- From standing, widely step your right foot forward into a lunge. Toes facing top of mat. Do not have knee over foot. Do not lean into the front leg.
- Turn left foot out 90 degrees, parallel with bottom of mat and keep heel aligned with front heel.
- Keep hips in line with the right foot, opening your torso towards the left side of the mat. Point your tailbone towards the mat and lengthen spine.
- Extend arms parallel to ground over each leg.
- Turn your head towards the top of the mat, looking past your right hand.
- Focus on keeping your spine, core, legs, and arms engaged and breathe! Inhale for 3 seconds, exhale for 3 seconds.
- Reach both arms above head and look up
- Bend torso over front knee to lunge
- Reach front arm to front foot and keep other arm stretched to the sky (Triangle pose)
Tree Pose (Vriksasana) - Hold for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Repeat on the opposite leg.
Find your center, physically and mentally. Essential to many yogis, holding this pose improves your balance and focus. Learning to clear your mind and focus on one task like holding this pose can help you find poise on and off the yoga mat. With arms at heart center, you should feel the stretch in your shoulders and torso down to your groin and calves.
- From standing, bring your hands to heart center
- Slowly bring the right foot up the rooted leg. You can stop below the knee or above the knee, but do not place foot on the knee.
- Point tailbone towards the mat and lengthen spine
- Focus on balancing and breathing. Inhale for 3 seconds, exhale for 3 seconds.
- Lift arms up towards sky
- Close your eyes
- Move foot higher to opposite hip
Corpse Pose (Shavasana) - Hold for 2 minutes.
Restore and relax with this final pose. Many yogis believe this pose is the most important pose of all due to its relieving and restorative attributes. With eyes closed, release tension left over from your practice and allow your body to fully relax. This pose allows you to peacefully connect with your innermost self and end your practice feeling rejuvenated, confident, and focused.
- Lie on your back on the yoga mat
- Let legs fall open loosely. (Feeling tight? Place pillow under knees to take pressure off lower back)
- Place arms 6 inches away from your body with palms facing up.
- Close your eyes and relax your face. (You may prefer a blanket over you to fully relax)
- Let your breath remain natural and relax every inch of your body.