‘Bout to get super zen in here
Reducing stress and anxiety is shown to be linked to a strong immune system. Stress is a leading cause of sickness, and when stressed, our deep tissue is compromised.
One of the best ways to elevate ALLLLLL the stress is yoga. Slow, rhythmic yoga poses like twists and restorative postures can help open your lungs, release congestion, relax the mind & body and help build a stronger immune system. Check out 7 Yoga poses below to try to kick your immunity up a notch!
1. Sitting and Breathing (Sukhasana and Pranayama)
WHAT: This yoga pose is simple yet effective. Sit cross-legged or kneeling, lift your head and look up stretching the neck, and rest your hands behind your body, pressing the tips of your fingers to the ground. Inhale and exhale for at least 10 deep breaths.
HOW IT HELPS: Sukhasana is a traditional meditation pose that allows for optimal breathing and movement of prana (life force energy) through the body. It helps relax and breathing which reduces stress hormones, heart rate, and nervous system distress.
2. Half Lord of the Fishes (Ardha Matsyendrasana)
WHAT: Begin by sitting cross-legged and plant your right foot over on the outside of your left leg on the mat. Inhale and plant your right palm behind your low back and bring your left elbow to the outside of your right knee. Inhale to lift and strengthen your spine, exhale to twist and shift the gaze over the right shoulder. Stay for 5 breaths on each side,
HOW IT HELPS: Spinal twists relieves the spine from the daily routines like sitting, lifting, etc. This pose gently compress, twist and stimulate the stomach which helps with digestive issues. Improper digestion causes toxins to build up which creates infection or inflammation.
3. Prasarita Padottanasana (Wide-Legged Standing Forward Bend)
WHAT: Stand with your feet about 4 feet apart. Interlace your fingers behind your back, and straighten your arms. Fold forward, lifting your arms up toward the ceiling. Keep the weight evenly distributed in your feet, with the legs engaged. Breathe deeply, inviting your chest to open and lungs to clear.
HOW IT HELPS: This inversion can be wonderful for draining mild chest congestion. With each exhalation, loosen up and invite the day’s tension to release.
4. Knee-Down Squat
WHAT: From Tabletop, curl your toes under, and bring your inner feet to touch. Spread your knees wide, sit back on your heels, and raise your arms overhead. Interlace your fingers and turn your palms toward the sky. Soften your shoulders, tuck your chin, and pull your belly in. Breathe evenly into your side rib cage, gently stretching your intercostal muscles and airing out the lungs. Hold for 6–10 deep breaths. Release back to top.
HOW IT HELPS: Strengthens your lower back and knees. This builds muscle and creates glutamine, which is an amino acid the immune system thrives off.
5. Dolphin Pose
WHAT: Start standing up, bend to touch your toes and move your away from your feet. Bring your forearms to a grounded position above your head keeping your spine straight. Close your eyes and take 3-6 full deep breaths.
HOW IT HELPS: The exercise drains excess lung congestion while developing arm strength.
6. Plank Pose
WHAT: Step back into plank pose and align hands under shoulders.
HOW IT HELPS: Works out the entire body and strengthens the spine and abdominal muscles result in a strong posture and which goes hand in hand in a strong immune system.
7. Legs Up The Wall
WHAT: Sit next to a wall, put your legs up the wall, extend your arms on either side. Stay in this pose for as long as possible.
HOW IT HELPS: When you’re feeling drained and tight in the hamstrings, this pose is great for the nervous system and manage stress. It also helps lymph fluid move through the body which fights infection.