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Driver Zen: 5 Yoga Techniques for a Calmer Commute

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Traffic Jam Frustration

Photo: Raysonho

While it’s fun to curve along back roads or on miles of highway on a road trip, commutes can be more of a headache than a joy ride. From congested roads to road-repair delays, driving to and from the workplace can frustrate some and trigger road rage in others.

Practicing some yoga is a great way to regain some peace of mind behind the wheel. Here are five simple techniques to implement when driving.

Photo: Pexels

Breath evenly

Train yourself to be aware of your breathing when driving. It’s easy to be so focused on driving that you inhale and exhale with shallow breaths. Instead, practice one-to-one breathing (i.e. breathe in and out for the same number of seconds).

Kapalabhati breath

A more advanced breathing technique is Kapalabhati breathing. This involves a slow, forced exhale followed by a natural inhale. Try this type of breath in four 30-second increments.

Seated cat/cow

Hold the steering wheel at 9 and 3, keeping both hands and arms level. Sit up straight then inhale deeply while bending backward slightly and rolling your shoulders back. Exhale and slowly hunch forward, pulling your naval inward toward your spine.

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Side stretch

With both hands on the wheel, inhale slowly while extending your spine. As you exhale, lean gradually to one side, keeping your eyes on the road. Inhale as you return back to the center and repeat the stretch on the other side.

Seated twist

This works best when you’re about to change lanes. Lift your spine and twist to look over your shoulder to check for vehicles in your blind spot.

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