Yoga in the Workplace

Given I’m starting a lunch-break yoga class tomorrow for the City of Alexandria’s employees, the below article is timely.   More employers should consider offering yoga and meditation classes as part of their health/wellness plans.  More and more research supports that stress-relieving classes can improve employee morale and ultimately boost the bottom line.  More below…http://www.ny1.com/ny1/content/index.jsp?stid=19&aid=68792Health
Some Employers Look To On-Site Yoga Classes For Stress Relief
April 16, 2007According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, 80 percent of workers experience job stress. In this Money Matters report, NY1’s Shazia Khan looks at how some employers are helping to better manage the stress.Every Friday afternoon, Taylor Schreiner takes a yoga class at his office.“I find the way that it centers me at work is really helpful and helps me in my work,” says Schreiner.

And experts say that’s just one of the reasons why more employers are offering perks such as yoga and meditation sessions at the workplace.

Renee Lee Rosenberg is a career coach with the Five O’clock Club and a senior consultant at Retensa, a company which tracks employee retention statistics. She says the corporate world now recognizes the need to do more than just talk about stress management.

“By offering yoga and stress reduction and deep breathing, employers are really helping their employees to be more productive, be more focused, to feel better,” says Rosenberg.

Schreiner works in the marketing insights department at Yahoo! At the request of its employees, the internet giant started to offer yoga classes in 2002.

“Cooling your jets is important in the internet space,” says Yahoo! employee Beth Lawrence. “It’s very fast and furious and it moves at a very quick pace, people work very long hours, so to be able to kind of revert back to a relaxation technique I think is critical.”

Yahoo! tapped Balance Integration for its corporate yoga classes. Tevis Gale a former executive in marketing and business development founded the company in 2001 and went on to build an impressive list of clients, including AOL, Deutsche Bank, and Google. Other onsite classes offered include Pilates and meditation.

“It’s wonderful for people to practice yoga or to go meditate or take a retreat – all of those things are fantastic but when we practice it to work it becomes directly connected to, ‘Gosh how do I use these skills when I am dealing with conflicts that come up in the midst of everyday?” says Gale. “So our belief is when you learn it at work and the teacher’s talking about work-life challenges all throughout the class it becomes immediately relevant.”

Some employees liken yoga classes at the workplace to a mini vacation.

“You come back fresh,” says Schreiner. “It’s just like going on vacation. You come back with a new perspective and a clean slate.”

The employer is also breathing easy because:

“Corporations are saving money,” says Rosenberg. “They’re are saving money because medical costs are going down, because employee retention is going up and employer productivity being increased.”

– Shazia Khan

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One response to this post.

  1. Finally, corporate america is starting to get it. Take care of your employees, enhance their well being, and see productivity increase.

    Reply

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