Driving in Manila can stress out anyone. Whether it’s bumper-to-bumper traffic, forgetting directions, or that random driver who cuts into your lane unannounced, these sources of stress could be deadly, as reported in a recent study by the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) stating that driving while stressed is as dangerous as talking on your mobile phone.
Ease the tension by trying out some calming yoga techniques. That’s right, there are some useful moves you can try from behind the wheel! Next time you’re stuck in a traffic jam, try these simple exercises to de-stress and calm down as you navigate through Manila's manic traffic.
Auto Yoga 1: Breathing
Breathing is key when combating stress. Take long, slow, deep breaths to immediately release tension. Inhale through your nose and exhale through your mouth for at least four counts. Breathing regularly will help soothe your brain and body to cope with traffic jam stress.
Auto Yoga 2: Your Neck
Tension builds up on your neck after a long day at the office. With both hands on the wheel, keep your shoulders down and slowly roll your head in a full circle, in both directions. If there’s a certain spot that needs some extra stretching, hold your stretch a bit longer. Then, keeping both hands on the wheel, twist to the right and left, as if you’re checking your blind spots.
Auto Yoga 3: Your Back
When you are at a complete stop, raise your hands up, and inhale deeply. While you exhale, fold your body forward so that your upper body is over the steering wheel. Take a few deep breaths; this will loosen up your muscles. Then put one arm across your chest and use the other to pull your elbow in towards the body. Do the same for the other arm. The weight of the pull will release tension in your lower back.
Auto Yoga 4: Hands and Feet
Driving requires using both your hands and feet, so it’s important that they are not stiff and tense. At a complete stop, clasp your hands together and twist them in a circular motion. This will help to release tension and circulate blood flow. At a complete stop where you’re able to put your car on park mode, do the same with your feet: move each foot in a circular motion.
Remember to try these tips next time you find yourself stressed out while driving!
Special thanks to Ford Philippines.