Why Offer Yoga Classes at Work?
Yoga is becoming increasingly popular in the workplace. Many companies now recognize the value of yoga and are offering classes to their employees as part of their stress reduction and corporate wellness programs during the workday. According to Yoga Journal, such companies include Chase Manhattan Bank, Forbes, HBO, GE, Wall Street brokerage firms, and dozens of Fortune 500’s like Nike, Apple, Harpo, Motorola, Google, Forbes, and General Motors.
Yoga in the work place makes it easy for employees to join in and eliminates travel times to and from a yoga studio. Corporate yoga promotes self care and stress relieving techniques during the workday.
One of the many benefits of Yoga is developing an awareness of the effects of stress in our lives, and the skills with which to manage them. These benefits naturally extend from the individual participant to the work environment in which they are contributing. Regular practice is known to bring improved health in mind and body, increased energy, well-being and productivity.
Unlike other exercise routines yoga is low impact, improves strength and flexibility, builds concentration, and reduces mental and physical stress and tension. In addition, yoga is known to eradicate fatigue and generate energy , all of which lead to increased productivity and morale. Yoga exercises are simple and can be modified for different skill levels and abilities – perfect for the office environment!
Benefits for the Company
Yoga can be a positive influence on one’s ability to concentrate, gain confidence, and reduce stress. All these things lead to more a more productive, harmonious work environment. But that’s not the only benefit to companies. Providing yoga for employees can significantly cut operating costs.
The benefits yoga offers employees can translate into valuable assets for businesses; namely, higher employee morale, increased productivity, and fewer sick days and disability claims.
- Job stress costs U.S. companies about $300 billion annually through absenteeism, diminished productivity, employee turnover and direct medical, legal and insurance fees.
(The American Institute for Stress)
- Stress is the cause of nearly 90% of doctor visits in the U.S.
(The American Institute for Stress)
- Companies spend $14,000 per employee per year on medically related productivity losses. (CorSolutions, Inc.)
- Recent research indicates that companies who offer yoga and wellness programs to their employees reduce their annual health insurance premiums, and thereby improve their bottom line. According to a recent study on worksite health programs, corporations realized $3 – $6 in savings for every $1 invested in wellness programs. The same study showed more than a 25% average reduction in health-care costs for well-designed programs (American Journal of Health Promotion).
Offering yoga classes at work is a low-cost and innovative solution for companies wanting to reduce health care expenses, relieve workplace stress and promote employee well-being. The performance of a corporation depends on the performance of its key assets—employees. Healthy employees are more productive and more cost effective.
Benefits of Yoga for the Employees
- Improves concentration, decision-making skills and ability to multi-task
- Reduces multiple costs of stress-related illnesses and absenteeism
- Improves alertness and productivity and ability to react more calmly in demanding situations
- Relieves head, neck and back strain, carpal tunnel syndrome, insomnia, high blood pressure and work-related injuries from repetitive motion, sedentary job environments and/or lifting and moving objects
- Creates better customer service
- Enhances attitude and outlook
- Promotes well-being in the workplace
Do Our Employees Need to Have Yoga Experience to Participate?
Not at all! Yoga classes are suitable for all levels and custom designed to meet the needs of your employees. All shapes and sizes of students are welcome, regardless of fitness or flexibility level. I offer a safe and detailed approach to all postures with attention given to body ailments commonly experienced at work.
Lunch Time/After Work Program
Bring a yoga class directly to your work place! Classes last 30, 45 or 60 minutes and meet 1 to 5 times a week. They can be done in any relatively quiet room.
The following are the techniques the Corporate Yoga Program utilizes:
- Work-injury prevention exercises
- Desk and chair exercises to practice any time!
- Simple physical stretching and breathing practices
- Concentration and focusing methods
This program easily fits into a lunch break, allowing time to both relax and eat, or after the workday in the early evening getting home in time for dinner. The students experience the foundational practices of concentration, breathing, physical stretching exercises (including stretches they can do at a desk!), and relaxation techniques.
What Do We Need To Conduct a Program in the Workplace?
You will need a suitable room, large enough for the number of participants, and one that is fairly quiet. Although most participants like to change into more comfortable or loose fitting clothing for class (shorts or work out pants, a T-shirt, etc), plenty of participants have enjoyed a yoga session in a button up shirt and slacks, or jeans.
Each student will need a yoga mat. I can supply some mats or students can bring their own.