As we head into the cooler months here in Australia, colds and flus are becoming all the more common. Whilst yoga may seem like the last thing you feel like doing when your head is stuffy and your throat sore, these are 5 ways yoga can actually help your immune system.
It encourages us to rest.
Not only does yoga get us to slow down and listen to our bodies it also encourages us to rest when we need. Where once we may have popped some painkillers and kept on going, a regular yoga practice helps us tune in to when we really need to stop and look after ourselves.
Helps stimulate body systems
Various yoga poses, particularly twisting and opening sequences, help to stimulate the systems of the body that work to keep your immune system healthy; the circulatory, digestive, nervous, and endocrine systems. If you’re already unwell adding some gentle lying or seated twists can help to get these systems moving.
Helps us to breathe clearly
The practice of Nadi Shodhana or alternate nostril breathing helps to calm and purify the nervous system. Whilst this is not a practice for when you have blocked sinus, it is a great practice to help balance the body when you feel like you are starting to come down with something. You never know – this practice might just help keep it away altogether. (Watch the full online class for instructions on how to practice Nadi Shodhana.)
Encourages us examine what we put into our body
Whilst at first we may come to yoga purely for exercise, it’s not uncommon to find ourselves quickly examining other areas of our lives, including what we put into our body and how it affects the way we feel. Healthy food and lots of water soon become our top priority which helps to keep us healthier year round.
Helps us de-stress
Stress is one of the number one causes of illness and regularly managing your stress levels through yoga can help to drastically reduce how often you get sick. If you’re already feeling a bit off try practicing an extra long savasana with your head raised on a bolster or cushion.
Watch the video below to learn more about what yoga poses to practice when your immune system needs a boost, or click through to my online classes to watch the full length class.