Yoga for winter season
Say Hello to life this winter
06 Sep 2018, 19:45
By Jugnu Agarwal
Winter comes with a lot of goodness, but it can be a nightmare for people suffering from joint pains, breathlessness, asthma and other kinds of problems.
If you have dreaded the onset of winters for years, this winter can be different.
You can practice the following yoga to bring about a change in your winter lifestyle:
Stretch your muscles
The biggest problem faced by most people in winter is the stiffness of the muscles. So begin the routine with light stretching movements. Rotate your neck and hands, do some light jogging to warm up and get ready for the asanas.
Suryanamaskar or Sun Salutation
Now that you have stretched your muscles and the morning stiffness is reduced, you can start with Suryanamaskar or Sun Salutation. Suryanamaskar itself is an excellent stretching routine and a complete form to work on all parts of your body. This has to be done early morning and essentially on an empty stomach. There are several versions available for Suryanamaskar, choose one and stick to that. While it can be done in three different speeds - slow, medium and fast, the traditional version is slow, nice and gentle and will make you feel happy and warmer inside. Regular practice of suryanamaskar improves your posture and your heart health. Apart from stretching and toning your muscles, this yoga also relaxes your mind and creates positive energy for you. Practising Suryanamaskar will heat up your body and help you face the winter cold better.
2 sets of Suryanamaskar is recommended for a beginner, although you can do as much as you want. You can follow up Suryanamaskar with more asanas to relax and rejuvenate.
Kapalbhati will also warm up your body. For asthma patients, Kapalbhati can be the beginning of a new life. The technique is extremely beneficial to get relief from congestion and treat cough and cold. The long-term practice has amazing effects on the lungs, stomach and the muscles around them since it helps in providing more blood to these areas.
In the end, you should feel warm inside, a great feeling to have on cold winter mornings.
Surya Bhedana Pranayama
Surya Bhedana Pranayama is a breathing technique with a range of benefits. This is a pranayama where you inhale air through your right nostril and exhale through your left nostril. Inhaling through the right nostril has been proven to be very effective to heat up the body. A few minutes of this pranayama every day can help you in various ways. Breathing through the right nostril also stimulates the metabolic process. The systematic intake of oxygen removes any problems that you might be facing due to insufficient oxygen in the body. It cleans frontal sinuses and destroys intestinal worms. This pranayama is often used as a treatment for depression.
Bhastrika Pranayama is a Hatha Yoga which is often called the ‘bellows breath' because air is moved forcefully in and out of the lungs, much like a bellow. It involves forceful and rapid inhalation and exhalation where the diaphragm is used to do the routine. After a few rounds, you will feel a heat inside your body produced by the constant movement of air. Slowly, you will find your body and mind refreshed. It has a great effect on blood circulation. Regular practice of Bhastrika Pranayama has proved to have positive effects on memory. The proper practice also strengthens the lungs and therefore is very good for asthma and bronchitis patients.
After completion of the above-mentioned yoga, your body will be heated up and excited. It is very important to balance out the routine and bring your body back to the right temperature. Follow up with a few rounds of Anulom Vilom to calm down the body and mind. Finally, calm yourself completely with a few minutes of Savasana. Just lie down, relax, feel the nice winter chill and don't forget to notice the birds chirping outside.
While the above mentioned techniques have a range of benefits for your body, mind and soul, taking a doctor's approval before starting off is essential, especially for those who suffer from high blood pressure. Taking caution is always suggested.
Try them and see how it changes the way you enjoy the winter season. Go ahead and plan a picnic with your family - your joint pains won't bother you as much.