'Tis the Season...
'Tis the season for stuffy noses and scratchy throats. 'Tis the season for chilly bodies and achy muscles. 'Tis the season for cold and flus. 'Tis the season to turn to our yoga practice to keep us feeling relaxed and our bodies healthy.
You may have noticed that, with the change in seasons and time, comes a turn in communal health. There may be a bug floating about the office, a case of strep throat in the classroom, a slew of runny noses and shared coughs within friend or family groups. It's just what happens during certain times of the year. Right? Well, yes, but along with it just being a correspondence to the season, we must think about the different things that make us susceptible to illness. These include, but are not limited to, lack of sleep, stress levels, and poor nutrition. Luckily enough for us yogis, yoga is a natural immune booster!
I find that when I feel the least bit ill, I turn to my yoga practice to relax my mind, restore my body, boost my energy levels, and strengthen my immune system. Here is a list of postures you can try to aid in preventing sickness, as well as aiding a healing body.
Child's Pose (Balasana): This resting posture can be used when one is feeling fatigued. Balasana relaxes the muscles on the front of the body, and passively stretches the muscles in the back. The internal organs are released forward, while the back of the thorax and lungs are opened.. This posture also aids in decongesting the chest.
Down Dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana): This restorative posture is also an arm balance, and a partial inversion. You can actively stretch and strengthen various regions of the body while in this is posture. Down dog can also increase circulation, and allows congested sinuses to drain.
Cobra Pose (Bhujangasana): This backbend can be used to strengthen the arms an pad shoulders, open the chest, and tone the back. Cobra Pose also stimulates the thymus, which is responsible for the growth of the T Cells, responders to colds and flus.
Bridge Pose (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana): This posture can restore and realign the spine and hips. The lift in the trunk of the body provides a slight inversion, improving blood circulation, and opening the chest to relieve any mucus buildup.
Plow Pose (Halasana): This postures is both restorative and an inversion. It has positive effects on both the cardiovascular system, and the flow of cerebral spinal fluid. Halasana also stimulates the thyroid gland, which releases hormones that control the body's metabolism.
Yoga can be a great tool to aid in healing sickness and keeping the body healthy. You may find that by combining a restoritive practice, along with drinking plenty of water, eating a well balanced diet, and getting plenty of rest, it may not be the season to feel ill after all!