People have never heard of immunity as much as they have during the coronavirus outbreak. And, now there is another outbreak (Monkeypox), the world is struggling with. Due to the absence of proper medications and vaccines, the only defense the experts suggested is to improve your immune system. But can yoga help boost your immunity?
Well, the answer is yes. Yoga is practiced for centuries to relax your soul, mind, and body and to keep them in harmony. If practiced regularly, yoga can help improve your immune system, detoxify and revive your body, reduce anxiety and stress, and reinvigorating your overall well-being. Check out these expert-suggested yoga asanas and pranayama that will not only assist in strengthening your immunity system but will also boost your lung capacity:
#1 Bhujangasana (The Cobra Pose)
Cobra pose or bhujangasana is a reviving backbend asana that helps stretch your lower back, engage your abdomen, and contract your shoulder and ventral muscles. It helps improve your immune system, strengthen your spine, tone your buttocks, activate your abdominal organs, and relieve stress and fatigue while increasing body flexibility.
- Lie down on your stomach with your toes touching the ground and your head resting on the floor.
- Place your legs together close to your heels and feet slightly touching each other.
- Place your palms under your shoulder, and elbows parallel to your shoulder, close to your torso.
- Inhale while slowly uplifting your chest, head, abdomen, keep your navel on the ground. Try to put equal pressure on both of your palms.
- Curve your spine vertebra while breathing normally. If possible, try to straighten your arm while curving your back as much as possible; move your head up and look at the sky or terrace.
- Keep your shoulders relaxed and try to intensify your stretch by aligning your elbows straight.
- Make sure your feet are close, touching each other. Smile, inhale and exhale like smiling cobras.
- Do not stretch too much or overstrain yourself.
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#2 Adhomukha Savanasana (Downward-Facing Dog)
Considered as one of the most popular yoga asanas, this pose targets your entire body and needs a lot of strength to practice it. This pose helps stretch your stiff legs, back, arms, calves, and hamstrings while relieving your back pain. It also assists in strengthening your ventral muscles and stabilizing your spine.
- Go onto your fours. Make a table in a way that your back creates the table top and your feet and hands make the table legs.
- Exhale while elevating your hips up, straightening your elbows and knees. Create an inverted V-shape with your body.
- Keep your hands parallel to your shoulders and feet parallel to your hips.
- Press your hands down steadily, widening your shoulder blades. Keep your neck lengthened ensuring your inner arms touching your ears.
- Hold the pose while breathing deeply. Look at your navel.
- Exhale, flex your knees, and come back to the table posture. Relax.
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Also known as chair pose, this is a standing asana that requires you to form an imaginary chair. Sounds a little challenging? It is a powerful and intense posture that helps align your chest, hips, and spine, strengthen your torso and lower back, tone your ankle, knees, leg, and thighs while connecting your body with the mind.
- Stand straight with your feet wide apart slightly.
- Stretch your hands forward with the palm facing downwards. Ensure your elbows are straight.
- Bend your knees slightly, smoothly pushing your pelvis down like you're sitting on a chair.
- Try to be comfortable. Make sure your hands are parallel to the floor.
- Breath normally and hold the position.
- Try to go down slowly and create Sukhasana (cross-legged pose) posture.
- Lie down or stand again to relax.
- Avoid it if you have severe knee pain, sprained ankle, arthritis, insomnia, or headache.
- If you're practicing this asana during menstruation, take extra care if you have lower back pain.
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#4 Bhastrika Pranayama
It is one of the indispensable breath practices in pranayama and yoga that aims to cleanse your body, keeping it energized. It helps keep your mind and body in harmony, relieves your stress and anxiety while improving your immunity and respiratory system.
- Sit in a sukhasana (cross-legged) or vajrasana position.
- Form a first while folding your arms. Place your arms near your shoulders.
- Take a deep breath, lift your hands upward and open the fists.
- Breath out forcefully, pushing your arms downwards to your shoulders, and clench your fists.
- Repeat the same for 20 breaths. Relax and repeat it 3 times.
#5 Surya Bhedi Pranayama
Also known as right nostril breathing, this is one of the most beneficial pranayama techniques. This targets the activation of your body's sun element. This helps boost your energy and body watch, cleanse your blood, improve your digestion system and eliminate gas.
- Sit in padmasana or siddhasana position.
- Close your eyes and keep your spine, back, and neck straight.
- Close your left nostril using your little or ring finger.
- Breathe smoothly and deeply by your right nostril or nadi.
- Close your nostril with your thumb and hold your breath for a few seconds.
- Breath out with the left nostril.
- Repeat the same for 25 - 30 times.
- Avoid it if you're having hypertension issues.
- Avoid doing it if you're living in hot temperature areas.
Yoga is a holistic exercise that not only helps improve your physical health but also connects your body with the mind while keeping it serene and calm. To reap the benefits of yoga and increase mindfulness, you can join our wellness yoga TV sessions specially designated by our trained instructor. Consult with our health specialists and get a personalized trainer on The Wellness Corner app.