jeudi 28 juin 2012

The Benefits of Yoga in the workplace

Did you know that Google offers several weekly classes before work, during lunch, and after work as part of their commitment to promoting a work/life balance?
Did you know that Danone has a great Yoga room in its headquarter building, Boulevard Haussman, in the heart of Paris?
While large corporations may have fitness centers with rooms meant for exercise, smaller companies do with what they have—classes may be held in the lunchroom or conference room and pushing chairs and conference tables on the side can be part of the game! Another challenge of yoga practice in the workplace, is that students have a limited amount of time. They're often at different levels. Some show up late or leave early due to pressing deadlines. But in the end, everybody agrees that these 60 minutes of body postures, breathing, relaxation and mindfulness are really a great investment.
Human Resources people understand perfectly why it's beneficial to have an healthy work environment as it impacts greatly on performances and balance. An intial talk with employees and HR is key to define what  the company's most prevalent health issues are and adapt the yoga class accordingly. From  poor postures due to long hours in front of a computer, repetitive strain injury or recurring headaches, yoga can help. Office workers, for example, tend to sit hunched at a desk all day, working without breaks and breathing shallowly. Others have to deal with unhappy customers and need practical tools to release tension in their mind and posture.
Bringing yoga in the workplace enables to reach out to people who would have never set foot in a studio. For instance, employees who have long daily commutes to their workplace often lack of time and energy to enroll at yoga or fitness class once back home after the working hours. But when the company is encouraging them to take a healthful break on the spot, they might walk as far as the conference room, where they can learn ways to unleash their creativity, cope with job-related stress, or broaden their perspectives about life.
As a conclusion, yoga may not always make people love their jobs, but it can give them tools for accepting their work and coping with stress and live happier.

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