Benefits Of Winter Yoga - Part II

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The edgy winter chill slows down your metabolism and immunity. Thus, arises the need to prime your body for optimum winter health. Yoga is an age old practice that keeps you rejuvenated throughout the year, so why not reap its benefits in winter.

Winter is the season of hibernation and introspection. It is also the right time to get in to yoga and meditation, as you can do this easily at home. Being the fourth season of the year, winter gives you the time to stabilize yourself. Practicing yoga during winters helps you to align with/correspond to your four elements or four chakras of the body, which act as your energy center. 

We have already told you why doing yoga is important and how it can help in getting over the winter blues. Thus, in continuation of our previous installment, Benefits Of Winter Yoga - Part I, here are some more yoga poses that can help you stay healthy, calm and rejuvenated during the lazy winter days. 

Uttanasana

Also known as standing forward bend, this particular asana is excellent for maintaining flexibility during winters.

Uttanasana

Instructions 

  • Stand with your feet hip-width apart.
  • While exhaling bend down, folding your waist completely.
  • Bend knees slightly if needed
  • Clasp your opposite elbows and straighten your legs if you can
  • Hold this position for 5 to 10 breathing cycles

Benefits 

  • Improves flexibility
  • Lengthens the spine
  • Relieves tension in spine, neck and back
  • Strengthens thighs and knees
  • Improves digestion
  • Reduces pain in lower back
  • Opens shoulder joints
  • Stimulates pituitary and pineal glands
  • Exercises your colon, kidneys and pancreas

Caution

Avoid doing this if you are suffering from any kind of back injury or have gone through knee, back or hamstring surgery. For those suffering from chronic back pain Ardha Uttanasana will be a better option.

Setu Bandha Sarvangasana

The bridge pose is ideal  for calming your mood and boosting it at the same time during the dull winter weather 

 

Setu Bandha Sarvangasana

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Instructions

  • Lie flat on back with face upwards
  • Keep your knees bent and feet on the mat
  • Press your feet while lifting hips and thighs
  • Place yoga block at the desired height beneath your sacrum
  • Your head, shoulders and arms should remain on mat
  • Hold for 5 to 10 breathing cycles
  • For nice shoulder opening you can clasp your hands under the body and around the block

Benefits 

  • Calms your mind
  • Helps in relieving mental depression
  • Treats insomnia 
  • Stretches neck, chest and spine
  • Stimulates abdominal organs
  • Improves digestion
  • Rejuvenates tired legs 
  • Stimulates thyroid glands and lungs

Caution 

People suffering from neck pain and back injury should avoid doing this pose. Knee pain and shoulder injury are the other two conditions in which this pose should not be done. Do not try to turn your head right or left when in this pose. 

Supta Baddha Konasana 

Reclining Bound Angle Pose is also known as the vacation pose of Yoga as it provides a soothing rest to the body

Supta Baddha Konasana

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Instructions 

  • Use yoga bolster or a couch cushion. 
  • Sit with the support or bolster or cushion, which is in line with your lower back. 
  • Lie back over the cushion
  • Bring the soles of your feet together
  • Extend your arms out from the shoulders
  • Hold the position for 10 to 20 breathing cycles


Benefits 

  • Gives a comforting & relaxing predisposition to the body
  • Calms the nervous system
  • Promotes blood flow to the lower abdomen
  • Stretches inner thighs
  • Relieves the symptoms of stress and mild depression

Caution 

Anyone suffering from knee, groin, shoulder or hip injury should avoid doing this pose. Pregnant woman can perform this asana but under the guidance of a yoga expert. If you have lower back pain then this asana is not right for you. 

Adding any of the six asanas shared in our winter yoga guide to your daily schedule will surely help you beat the winter chill. Stay tuned as yoga for elderly people will be our next resort to natural wellness for aged people. 

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