On the move? Yoga can help


Lord of Penmai
Jul 5, 2011
On the move? Yoga can help

Ever imagined you could do yoga while on a flight or in a train or a moving bus/car? But it is possible: you can practise yoga while on the move.

These journeys are known to be back-breaking and stressful. Especially when you are squeezed in a cramped space for long, without much scope for movement, mainly those of the legs. Exercises can help ease the numbness, cramps or body pain and increase blood circulation.

Said Dr Sejal Shah, national co-coordinator, Sri Sri Yoga, Art of Living: "Frequent travellers usually complain of knee pain and lower back ache or jet lag. Simple yoga performed during travelling can help reduce the stress. Even if you are not practising yoga regularly, you can try the asanas and get relief."

"It is important that you practise these yoga poses with care. If you have any special health condition, consult your doctor before you do yoga and don't forget to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated," advised Shah.

Yoga exponent Bharat Thakur said: "If you're a frequent traveller, you face some common health risks like deep vein thrombosis. Also dehydration is caused from the re-circulated, dry air inside the flight. The rigid seating arrangements also cause stiffness of the neck and shoulder muscles. Yogasanas can help in relaxing the muscles."

Try breathing excercise
Not only physical exercise but breathing exercise and meditation done for about 15 minutes can help in relaxing the tightened body muscles during travelling. They increase blood circulation and prevent body stiffness and thrombosis.

They can also help in preventing jet lag, increase digestion and fight travel sickness. One must start with sukshma vyayama by performing simple yogasanas followed by breathing exercise and chanting for 15 minutes while travelling on long flights or bus journey," said R Nagarathna, dean, Division of Yoga and Life Sciences, S-VYASA University.

Know the benefits
Releases muscle tension
Increases blood circulation
Relaxes your mind
Soothes nervous system
Decreases anxiety
Keeps you fresh to take on activities after you reach your destination
Postures you can try while travelling

Seated spinal twist
Sit upright on your seat with your feet on the floor
Place your right hand on your left knee and your left hand on the seat, just behind your left hip
Inhale and gently lift up through your spine and chest (as much as possible, without straining or disturbing your fellow passenger). Now twist slowly to your left so that you're looking over your left shoulder.
Hold this position for a few seconds, keep breathing deeply and then as you exhale, gently twist slightly more by engaging your belly muscles more towards the left
Leverage your right hand against your left knee to deepen the twist. Take eight-ten deep breaths
Repeat the procedure on the other side

Back-release pose
1. Sit upright on your seat, cross your right ankle over your left knee, leaving foot on the floor
2. Keep your right foot flexed to help protect knee. Breathe deeply and focus on lower back
3. If you wish to deepen the stretch, fold and bring your torso forward
4. Hold this pose taking eight-ten deep breaths
5. Repeat this posture with left foot

Neck-release pose
Sit upright and lean your left ear towards your left shoulder. Wrap your left arm around the right side of your head, touching your right cheek. Breathe deeply
Release the left arm and slowly roll the head forward, bringing your chin down and over to the right side
Now, lean your right ear towards the right shoulder. Wrap your right arm around the left side of your head, touching your left cheek. Breathe deeply into the chest
Repeat this taking six-eight deep breaths on each side

Seated cat pose
1. Sit on the edge of your seat. Keep a comfortable distance between the knees. Keep your ankles in line with knees
2. Place your hands on your thighs and as you inhale, tilt your pelvis and abdomen outward and allow your chest to arch up and forward
3. As you exhale, curl your pelvis inwards and backwards, arching your spine outwards, lower your chin as your chest moves inwards
4. Repeat this four-six times

Seated shoulder shrugs with blanket
1. Sit comfortably with your back against your seat and place a rolled-up blanket lengthwise along your spine, against the back of your seat. Inhale gently and then hold your breath. Lift your shoulders, while keeping your arms at rest
2. Still holding the breath, squeeze the shoulders by pushing them closer to the ears and backwards (without straining yourself)
3. As you exhale, squeeze your entire shoulder blades together and then bring them down
4. Repeat exercise three times
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Yuva's of Penmai
Penman of Penmai
Jan 5, 2012
nice info...

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