Yoga for hectic life  
by: Vasanthi Bhat (

Do you often feel that you are Stressed out! but do not have time to relax? Yes, Stress is universal. It does not discriminate, it affects people of all ages and all walks of life. In today´s fast-moving (hi expectations, competitions) society, often times we cannot prevent stressful situations; however, we can learn to manage and deal with them.

Yoga is one of the most effective and wholesome form of exercise not only for the body but also for the mind, especially for today´s busy life. Busy people generally try to accomplish too much in too little time, and consequently accumulate a lot of stress in their lives. This accumulated mental stress gradually affects different parts of the body causing many stress related ailments. Some people experience insomnia, nervousness and anxiety, others develop heart or lung ailments; many suffer from ulcer, cancer, strokes and mental disorders.

Contrary to what many people believe, one does not have to practice hours of yoga each day. Just taking ten to fifteen minutes out of one´s busy schedule or taking couple of minutes every hour or so have proven to be beneficial. There are several quick and easy-to-do tension relieving yoga postures, breathing (pranayama), and meditation techniques that can be practiced throughout the day to relieve stress as well as rejuvenate and heal the body.

Before going to work, you may practice standing stretches (such as Tadasana, Veerabhadrasana, Padahastasana, and Dwikonasana). It takes only 3-5 minutes.

If you have some time, sitting you may practice sitting postures such as Shashankasana, Parvatasana, and Pranamasana. These are excellent for relaxing.

These stretches are very simple to practice. and are highly effective to relieve built-up tension, ease backpain, energize the body, improve concentration and prevent muscle pulls. Practicing deep breathing as you stretch helps relax the body and balance the nervous system, purifies all the breathing channels, promotes peace of mind and develops alertness especially during difficult and stressful situations.

During your breaks at work, some quick, but effective yoga exercises can be practiced. Neck movements and shoulder socket rotation relax the neck and upper back. While sitting in a chair you can stretch your arms upward and twist your body both sides to release tension from the hips, spine and upper back. These are some of the few techniques that can relax the muscles and release the tension accumulating from long hours of sitting. If possible, close your eyes and do 5-10 slow and deep breathing to relieve mental fatigue which often results as anxiety and tension.

A predominant factor that also contributes to tension is ´worrying´. It is very crucial to understand that worrying about the future or past does not produce a favorable outcome and in fact has a negative impact on one´s performance. It is important to focus on the present moment, utilizing it to plan the future, and learn from the past and not to worry about it. Worrying causes a shortness of breath, and hypertension, which are both harmful to one´s mind as well as body. It is, therefore, very important to practice some relaxation techniques at the end of a busy day. Yoga´s numerous benefits are obvious for those who practice it. In today’s fast moving pace, just a few minutes a day is all it takes to reap the benefits for one’s body and mind.