Take a 1-min quiz to chair yoga workout plan Male Female

Chair Yoga Routine for Stress Relief and Relaxation

If you’re passionate about staying fit and flexible but you often find yourself working long hours at your desk, you’re not alone. Sitting for long hours may result in tight hips, a bad back, anxiety, and an increased risk of heart disease (3). 

The problem is that including a workout routine in your incredibly busy schedule may seem unnerving. How can you include a workout when you can’t leave your desk?

One form of exercise that is both accessible and highly effective, while also addressing the needs of the body and mind without needing much space or time, is chair yoga. 

This modified yoga practice ensures that everyone can get countless health benefits, regardless of their fitness levels or mobility. 

In this article, we’ll discuss chair yoga benefits and how you can include chair yoga for beginners. 

What Is Chair Yoga?

Chair yoga is a gentle form of yoga where traditional yoga poses are modified to be performed with the help of a chair. This combines breathing techniques, meditation, and a series of modified yoga postures that are designed to safely stretch and strengthen the body. 

One of the best things about chair yoga is it can be done anywhere, as long as there’s a comfortable chair. 

This is why it’s the perfect workout for the home, office, or even while traveling. It’s also an ideal option for seniors, individuals with mobility issues, or anyone else who is seeking gentle exercise. 

BetterMe App helps you achieve your body goals with ease and efficiency by helping to choose proper meal plans and effective workouts. Start using our app and you will see good results in a short time.

Does Chair Yoga Really Work?

Yes, chair yoga can provide several health benefits. While you may see chair yoga accompanied by words such as “gentle”, this doesn’t mean that it’s ineffective. 

Many of us are aware that traditional yoga has countless health benefits, from increased flexibility and muscle strength to stress relief and mental agility. The results are no less profound when these practices are tailored to be performed while sitting. 

Here are some of the potential health benefits of chair yoga

Improved Flexibility

Evidence suggests that chair yoga helps increase flexibility by gently stretching the muscles and joints (1). Regular practice can enhance the range of motion, which makes everyday tasks easier and reduces the risk of injury. 

If you suffer from tight hips, our Chair Yoga for Hips can help you increase your flexibility. 

Enhanced Strength

While chair yoga is gentle, it can still help strengthen several muscle groups, including the legs, arms, and core. Simple movements such as leg lifts, arm circles, and seated twists can help engage muscles and promote stability and balance. 

Check out our Chair Yoga for Core Strength routine to help you get started. 

Stress Reduction

As with other forms of yoga, chair yoga emphasizes mindfulness and deep breathing, which can help calm the mind and reduce stress levels (2). Practicing relaxation techniques while seated in a chair may help induce a sense of tranquility, promoting mental clarity and emotional well-being. 

In addition, there are other indirect health benefits of reduced stress, including improved sleep and better weight management. 

Try out our Chair Yoga For Stress Relief to help you go from stress to zen in a matter of minutes. 

Better Posture

Many people spend several hours sitting at their desks or hunched over their electronic devices, which leads to poor posture and back pain. One of the benefits of chair yoga is it encourages proper alignment and spinal health through gentle stretches and mindful awareness. 

As a result, chair yoga can help reduce discomfort and prevent postural imbalances. 

Increased Circulation

Finally, the gentle movements and deep breathing exercises in chair yoga can help stimulate blood flow throughout the body (4). This improved circulation can boost energy levels, enhance organ function, and promote overall vitality. 

Read more: 4 Best Core Exercises for Beginners: 16 Core Workouts for Men, Women, and Seniors

How Many Times a Week Should You Do Chair Yoga?

The frequency of your chair yoga practice will be dependent on your personal health goals and lifestyle. To experience improvements in flexibility and mental health, try practicing chair yoga at least three times a week. 

However, moderately long daily sessions can provide better results. 

Still, you must keep in mind that if you can only manage to do one or two workouts to start with, that’s better than none. Slowly increase the frequency until you are able to do a workout almost every day. 


Does a 28-Day Chair Yoga Workout Have Benefits?

Committing to a 28-day yoga program can provide an excellent introduction to the practice, helping you establish a routine and experience a variety of health benefits. 

Daily practice over a longer period can lead to habit forming and improvements in overall health and wellness. 

Chair Yoga Routine

A structured chair yoga routine can help you get the most out of your practices. However, if you don’t know where to start on your chair yoga exercises, don’t worry! We’ve got you covered. 

Here’s a sample sequence you can follow or adapt to suit your needs:

Seated Mountain Pose

Sit up tall in your chair with your feet flat on the ground. Allow your hands to rest on your thighs. Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths, focusing on lengthening your spine and relaxing your shoulders. 

Seated Cat-Cow Stretch

Place your hands on your knees. When you inhale, arch your back and lift your chest while gently tilting your pelvis forward (cow pose). When you exhale, round your spine, tuck your chin to your chest, and draw your belly button toward your spine (cat pose). 

Alternate between cat and cow pose for several minutes. 

Seated Side Stretch

Sit up tall and place your right hand on the side of your chair. Inhale and reach your left arm towards the ceiling. As you exhale, lean toward the right, stretching through the left side of your body. 

Hold the stretch for several breaths and then switch sides. 

Seated Forward Fold

Sit toward the front edge of your chair with your feet hip-width apart. Take a deep breath and lengthen your spine. As you exhale, hinge your hips forward, reaching your hands toward your feet or the floor. 

Make sure you keep your back flat on your neck in line with your spine. Hold this position for a few breaths, feeling the stretch in your hamstrings and lower back. 

Seated Spinal Twist

Sit up tall and place your right hand on the back of your chair. Take a deep breath and lengthen your spine. As you exhale, gently twist to the right, placing your left hand on your right knee. 

Use your breathing to deepen the twist. This means that with each exhale, you should go deeper into the stretch. Hold the twist for several breaths and then switch sides. 

Seated Breathing Meditation

To end your practice, close your eyes and bring your attention to your breath. Take slow and deep breaths. 

Feel your belly rise and fall with each inhale and exhale. Spend a few moments in quiet meditation, focusing on the sensation of breathing and letting go of any tension in the body. 

If you wish to free yourself from all the extra pounds that have been weighting you down for way too long, start using the BetterMe app and overhaul your entire life!

Tips for Getting the Most out of Your Chair Yoga Routine

You should consider the following tips to get the most out of your chair yoga practice: 

  • Consistency is key. Set aside a specific time each day to practice chair yoga, even if it’s for just a few minutes. This could be in the morning to start your day or in the evening for a relaxing wind-down.
  • One of the great things about chair yoga is its adaptability. If a pose doesn’t feel right, modify it. You can use props such as blocks, cushions, or straps to make the practice more comfortable.
  • Make sure you find a comfortable chair with a straight back and sturdy support. Avoid using chairs with wheels.
  • Wear loose and comfortable clothing. This will allow for ease of movement and make the experience more pleasant.

Read more: 16/8 Intermittent Fasting for Seniors: Benefits, Meal Plans, and Tips



  • How many calories does 30 minutes of chair yoga burn?

The number of calories burned through chair yoga depends on several factors, including age, weight, gender, workout intensity, and individual fitness level. However, as chair yoga is a gentle form of exercise, it may not burn as many calories as more vigorous forms of exercise. 

On average, chair yoga burns roughly 100 to 150 calories per 30 minutes for a 160-pound person.

  • Can you get in shape with chair yoga?

Yes, you can definitely get in shape practicing chair yoga. While it may not provide the same levels of cardiovascular exercise as other forms of vigorous workouts, it can still offer several health benefits. 

However, you should keep in mind that in order to lose weight or gain muscle, chair yoga needs to go hand-in-hand with good nutrition and other key lifestyle factors such as stress management and sleep quality. 

  • Can you lose weight doing chair yoga?

Yes, you can lose weight doing chair yoga. It can help you burn 100-150 calories (depending on your age, weight, height, and intensity). However, in order to lose weight, you need to have a calorie deficit (eating fewer calories than the body needs). 

  • What is 28-day chair yoga?

28-day chair yoga is a structured program that is designed to introduce people to the world of chair yoga over a period of 28 days. This type of program can help you stay consistent in the practice and make this workout a habit.

  • How do you lose belly fat with chair exercises?

While chair yoga may not directly target belly fat as intensely as other forms of exercise, it can still contribute to overall weight loss and toning. 

However, as previously mentioned, in order to lose weight, you need to have a caloric deficit. So, you should make sure you’re tracking your calories or following a meal plan that is intended for weight loss.

The Bottom Line

The benefits of chair yoga extend far beyond the physical aspect of the exercise. It’s a holistic approach that can be tailored to meet your specific needs, regardless of your current health condition or limitations. 

This inclusive form of exercise and self-care promotes harmony between the body, mind, and spirit. 

For those who are looking for a way to integrate movement and mindfulness into their lives in a sustainable and supportive way, chair yoga is the best option. So today, I encourage you to pull up a chair and start a practice that will open the doors to improved health and vitality. 


This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and should not be relied on to make decisions of any kind. Any action you take upon the information presented in this article is strictly at your own risk and responsibility!


  1. Chair Yoga to Improve Flexibility in Individuals With Parkinson Disease. (pubmed, 2023)
  2. Fifteen Minutes of Chair-Based Yoga Postures or Guided Meditation Performed in the Office Can Elicit a Relaxation Response. (pubmed, 2012)
  3. Sedentary Behaviors Increase Risk of Cardiovascular Disease Mortality in Men. (Medicine and science in sport and exercise, 2010)
  4. Yoga, aerobic and stretching exercise effects on neurocognition: Randomized controlled trial protocol. (pubmed, 2023)