Whether you’re commuting, racing against the clock, or stuck in traffic, driving can make us all feel anxious. However, did you know that driving while you’re stressed can also be dangerous for you and other road users? That’s why LeasePlan has teamed up with yoga instructor, Evangelia Kokkinou, who’s created some quick car yoga poses that can easily be done inside or outside a stationary car.
Note: Car yoga should not be practiced while driving.
At LeasePlan, we aim to make our fleet the safest in the industry and we’re serious about accelerating change by calling for low-speed communities and working towards zero road traffic injuries by 2030. Join us on our journey to zero serious road traffic injuries by encouraging car yoga. Yoga can help drivers to destress, helping ensure road safety. Afterall, relaxed drivers are better drivers.
We know that nobody has time for a lengthy routine, so we’ll be quick. These two yoga exercises, or asanas, will lightly stretch your body and create a relaxed mindset for the trip ahead:
Palm tree pose: Start in mountain pose with your feet hip-width apart. Take a few deep breaths and interlace your fingers. Slowly bring your arms up, raising them straight over your head with your palms facing upwards.
Standing cow face pose: Start in mountain pose, or if you’re in palm tree pose slowly lower arms, bringing you back to mountain pose. Raise one arm above your head and reach around your back to grab your other hand.
Being stuck in traffic can be a real nightmare but instead of stressing out, try to refocus your mind and keep calm with these two stretching asanas. Pro tip: try to be conscious of your breathing and you’ll feel the tension ease out of your neck and back:
Neck sides: Start by looking straight ahead and gently pull your head to the side with your hand, applying light pressure, until your ear is almost touching your shoulder.
Posterior Shoulder Stretch: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Link your fingers and raise your hands over your head with your palms facing up. Slowly bend a little at your waist, bringing your arms forward at the same time until they’re stretched out in front of your face.
There’s nothing worse than being cut off on the road or stuck behind a slow driver. As you feel the anger building inside, remember that you can’t control how other road users drive, only how you respond to them. Here are a few ways to stay cool, calm and collected as you get on with your trip:
Controlled breathing: Concentrate on your breathing. Take a few deep breaths in and out, put on one of your favourite songs and try thinking of something that brings you joy.
Face rub: If, like most people, you tend to clench your jaw or hold tension in your face when stressed, gently rubbing your temples, jawline or eyebrows can work wonders to alleviate tension. But please remember to only do so while your car is standing still.
Once you’ve reached your destination, do take a minute to stretch and decompress before you move on to what’s next with these simple asanas:
Mountain pose: Stand with your feet hip-width apart, with your arms by your sides and your palms facing forwards. Now take a deep breath.
Neck rolls: While in mountain pose, slowly roll your head in a circular motion to stretch and relax your neck muscles.
Standing side bend: Standing straight, lift one arm up and bend your body to the side. Once you’ve lifted your left arm, bend towards the right. Return to an upright position and repeat on the other side. Remember to be mindful of your breathing.
Warrior pose: Start in mountain pose, then step back with your right foot, pressing your right heel to the floor. Bend your left leg so that your knee is over your ankle. For more stability, you can use the back of your car and lean against it with both hands.
While you complete your car yoga routine, thank yourself for staying calm and safe during your trip.
Our SafePlan Zero strategy includes content, tools, guidelines and reports on the three major safety areas: the driver, the vehicle and fleet management. Join us in our journey to zero by learning more about what companies can do to make their fleets safer for drivers and other road users.