Yoga for Night Shift Employees

Working in the night shift creates a great amount of mental and health imbalance amongst employees. Due to the altered ‘body clocks’ they end up suffering from several health disorders.  It has a negative impact on the overall welfare and productivity of the employees.

Most common health issues seen in night shift employees are a disturbed circadian rhythm, i.e. 24-hour body cycle, sleep deprivation, insomnia, mental health issues anxiety, stress, fatigue, coronary heart disease, gastrointestinal disorders, disrupted family & social life, irregular eating habits, hypertension and backaches amongst others.

The endocrine system plays a central role responsible for hormone secretions and regulating nervous, immune and digestive systems etc. Our body is built to cope with stress and anxiety by way of the endocrine system. Hormones adrenaline is released to help and cope during stressful times. This particular hormone is released mostly during the daytime and less at night time.

Also, another hormone called melatonin, which is useful to keep the mind and body alert is produced at night time. The night time is required where the body wear and tear is taken care off. Thus for the night shift employees, the health risks are enormous due to hormonal imbalances.

How can Yoga help Night Shift Employees?

Yoga is an ancient Indian practice that is a scientific based system and advocates getting up early. However, for people whose livelihood depends on the night shift, here are some recommendations to cope and live a healthy & balanced life.

Few postures that help gentle stretching of the body and muscles with correct breathing are:

Sarvangasana – The complete body is benefitted by doing this asana. It is useful for improving blood circulation system, digestive system and reduces back pain problems.

Dhanurasana (Bow pose) – A pose that helps to reduce belly fat and decompresses the spinal cord. Good exercise for extremities.

Balasana (Child’s Pose) – This pose helps to relieve stress and increases blood circulation. It helps to reduce lower back pain. Take periodic breaks and try to maintain the posture for 2 to 3 minutes.

Parvatasana (Mountain Pose) – A basic pose that helps to decompress the spine and aids the respiratory, digestive, and blood circulatory system.

Trikonasana (Triangle Pose) – Cures backaches and helps in regulating menstrual cycles.

Meditative Poses: It is important to adopt different meditative postures, change your seating every forty minutes. And avoid sitting at one place and in one position continually.

  • Padmasana (Lotus Pose) – Helps to relieve stress and brings in peace of mind and strengthens the digestive system.

  • Sukhasana (Easy Pose) – Best Yoga posture for night shift employees as the name suggests it is a comfortable pose.

  • Vajrasana (Thunderbolt Pose) – It is meant to make your body strong like a thunderbolt. It relieves knee pain and helps in digestion and calming down posture.

Conscious Relaxation:  Shavasana (Corpse pose) helps in relaxation, stress busting and improving concentration.

Pranayamas: Anulom Vilom detoxes the system and helps to balance the energies of Ida and Pingalanadis.

Abdominal pranayama: It exercises the diaphragmatic muscle and reduces fatigue.

Sattvik Diet: Follow a Sattvik diet which is rich in fresh fruits, seasonal vegetables, whole grains. Hydrate yourself with at least twelve glasses of liquids every day.

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