Strengthen the minds & bodies of your employees with yoga

I’ve always been active. My school years were filled with various sports including netball, tennis and athletics, and I even pursued a degree in exercise science.

However, the toll of years of intense activity caught up with me in my early 20s while living in the UK. Chronic back pain became a daily struggle, exacerbated by a dismissive consultation with a specialist who offered no real solutions.

As an Exercise Physiologist, I understood the importance of flexibility in managing such issues, so when a colleague suggested trying yoga, I reluctantly agreed. Walking into that first Iyengar yoga class, I was met with a big warm smile from the teacher and a diverse mix of students, all united in pursuit of better health.

Initially skeptical, I found myself captivated as the class seamlessly transitioned from meditation to challenging poses. Witnessing a fellow student, well into her golden years, effortlessly perform a headstand, I realised yoga offered more than just physical benefits —it was a path to lifelong vitality. As the saying goes, “it’s not the years in your life that count but the life in your years”. My grandmother epitomised this philosophy in her life.

Over the past 25 years, yoga has not only eased my back pain but also become a cornerstone of my wellbeing. Beyond its physical benefits, my time on the yoga mat has been a sanctuary during life’s toughest moments, providing solace, focus and strength.

Australian research echoes my experience, revealing yoga’s profound impact on mental and physical health, with 1 in 5 indicating they have a specific health or medical reason for practicing yoga, and 79% cited stress reduction as a primary motivation for continuing practice. Many, like myself, find enhanced quality of life through regular sessions and associated lifestyle choices, including healthier eating.

As a workplace wellness consultant, I’ve witnessed firsthand the transformative power of yoga in corporate settings. Executives and workers leaving classes rejuvenated, contributing to a more productive and resilient workforce. Yet, despite its proven benefits, misguided skepticism persists, hindering its integration as part of a comprehensive wellbeing strategy.

For me, Saturday morning yoga remains a vital reset button, keeping me balanced amidst life’s chaos. And while headstands may still elude me, I’m confident that my practice will continue to enrich my life well into the golden years.

To find a yoga instructor near you or your workplace, visit www.yogaaustralia.org.au

References:

  1. Penman, S. (2008) Yoga in Australia: Results of a National Survey, School of Health Sciences, RMIT University, Melbourne.