England’s NHS Chief Executive Simon Stevens is to offer Yoga on the NHS to staff to reduce stress and sick leave.
NHS England has 1.3 million staff and sick leave is currently costing the service £2.4 billion a year.
Simon Stevens said ‘Health professionals needed better support to look after their own health, given the increasing demands being put on them.’
‘NHS staff have some of the most critical but demanding jobs in the country. When it comes to supporting the health of our own workforce, frankly the NHS needs to put its own house in order.’ Stevens continued.
Stevens lost 20kg through a work-based incentive scheme while employed in the US. He then took the job as top dog at England’s NHS and announced his ambition to give the opportunity for the staff here to improve their health. He is a firm believer that the NHS should lead by example as organisations take their employees’ health more seriously.
The announcement follows an investigation which exposed the scale of the fast food culture within the NHS. Burger King, Greggs and 92 branches of Costa Coffee selling muffins and high sugar drinks were among those criticised by health campaigners.
It is simply unacceptable for the NHS to have contracts with companies who do not meet nutritional standards and promote unhealthy eating!
Stevens will pledge to make the food available on NHS premises healthier and announce the creation of a dedicated occupational health service for GPs who are suffering from burnout and stress.
Stevens health revolution includes Yoga, Zumba, sports clubs and promoting cycling to work.
Lets hope Simon Stevens is the man that he claims to be!
Yoga is proven to boost your immunity, help you sleep at night and make you feel happier.
Tree Pose or Vrksasana is an intermediate level yoga pose.
Tree Pose Sanskrit name is Vrksasana.
Vrksa = Tree, Asana = Pose
How to Perform Tree Pose
1. Start off standing in Mountain Pose.
2. Focus on something that does not move and steady your breathe.
4. Shifting your weight onto the left foot while raising the right foot into a comfortable position. Your right foot should now be resting lightly against your left leg. The higher the better, but no stress or strain. Start out at your anckle or calf and work your way up. You can use your hands to guide you.
5. Use your hand to guide the right knee to the side to open up the hip area. While making sure that your hips are square and to the front.
6. Check in with your alignment. Lengthening through the neck, spine and crown as if being pulled up to the sky. Shoudlers down and away from the ears with no tension. Abdominals tucked in. Tailbone tucked under.
7. Bringing your hands into prayer, into heart centre, pressing together with forearms parallel to the ground.
8. Inhale stretching your arms and hands still in prayer position above the head.
9. With every inhalation reach further towards the sky.
10. Hold for 5-10 breaths and increase when your body progresses.
11. Exhale releasing the prayer to the heart centre. Then release your foot down to the ground and dropping your hands back to the side into Mountain Pose.
12. Peddle out the feet.
13. Repeat on the opposite side.
You can move from Mountain Pose into Tree Pose.
Benefits of Tree pose
Feeling grounded makes one feel strong and routed in the earth
1. Starting from Downward Facing dog. Gaze forward slowly and mindfully slide the right leg forward between both hands. Then bring in the right foot close to the left side of the body. Slide the left leg back and lower your hips to the ground.
2. Inhaling deeply push your palms or fingertips into the earth to lengthen through your spine, neck and head (Crown Chakra).
3. Exhale slowly and let your hips sink to the earth. Then roll your shoulders down and back while leaning forward with your chest creating that space for the lungs so you can ease yourself into this position.
4. Take your time to ease yourself into this position with every exhale deepen the pose to feel more grounded. Hold in this position for 3-6 breaths or whatever feels most comfortable for you. No stress or strain. You are now in Pigeon Pose.
5. Inhale deeply sliding your hands forward, up and above your head. With a slight back bend and your arms lenghtened. Gaze comes up to look at your finger tips. You are now in Upright Half Pigeon Pose. Hold here for 3-6 breaths.
6. Exhale sliding the hands forward, down to the earth and back into Pigeon Pose. Then using your hands to support your weight, inhale and push away from the earth while taking the right leg straight back into downward dog.
7. Peddle out the feet then repeat on the left side.
Stretches through all the thigh muscle groups
Ballances and improves coordination
Opens up the hips
Opens up the chest to deepen the breath and open up the heart centre
Centers the mind
Stimulates the nerves and brings all around flexibility to the body
Forward Bend or Uttanasana is an intermediate level yoga pose.
Uttanasana is one of my favourites. I practice Uttanasana everyday. It is part of the sun-salutations . It makes me feel relaxed but yet energises me and brings focus to my mind. Practice this posture everyday too and you will see the benefits as well as feel them. Give yourself a challenge and take photos of your progress everyday to really see and feel the story unfold of how you body breathing and flexibility changes over time with practice. You should not to stress or strain you are to relax and take your time. It will change your life!!!! Right …so here is my step by step guide…. get practising and let me know how you get on……
Step by step guide
First stand in Mountain Pose
Slightly bend your knees
Inhale deeply and place your hands on your hips
Exhale lowering your torso towards your knees making sure your back and neck are all in line
Lower your hands either side of your feet while straightening the legs if your body allows you to with no stress or strain
Touch the ground. If you cannot then you can use blocks to aid or keep the knees bent
If you want to deepen the posture then hold each ankle from behind so your forearms are touching your calves
Then on every exhalation try easing yourself more into Uttanasana
Hold here for a few breaths, whatever is most comfortable for you. then over time building up to one minute
Lengthens and strengthens the hamstrings calves and the back.
Brings a fresh circulation flow to the brain
Relieves stress, headaches, anxiety, tension and insomnia
Lifts your mood
Improves digestion and stimulates your kidneys and liver
Hypo extend the knees
Roll your upper back and shoulders forward
Force the torso towards the knees
Sandkrit name Uttanasana.
Uttan = Intense stretch, Asana = Pose
Uttanasana provides a stretch to the entire back of the body and a good stretch on the hamstrings.
I am available for private yoga classes in the Anstey and Leicester area. If you cant make it down to any of my classes or want to expand on what you have achieved in my classes please contact me. I can spend time with you to help you achieve your goals faster and to work on those specific areas that need more attention. You can ask me questions and I can give you more advice than I can in a class of 20 or more.
I can visit you in your own home or you can visit our private yoga studio.
One on one yoga tuition or small groups are available.
Private yoga tuition £40 per hour and fifteen minutes.
Private yoga classes in Anstey
Yoga with Shanti
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