Friday, 9 December 2016

Yoga for digestion-Part 1

Normally I would say do not practice yoga for at least two hours after eating.  The one exception is Hero pose.  It is a great pose to practice when you have eaten too much (who doesn't at Christmas!!) because it aids digestion.  This is, in part because the pose helps you to sit with a nice straight spine so that your digestive organs have room to get on with the job of digesting.  The pose also helps you feel calm and relaxed so that the parasympathetic nervous system is active, that is the branch of the nervous system that controls the quieter activities of the body like digestion.

To come into Hero pose start in kneeling with your knees together and heels apart so that there is space for you to sit back between your heels.  Your feet should be in line with your shins..  Sit back between your heels.  If this is too much for your knees, elevate your hips by placing one or two blocks between your heels (short edge of the block towards your knees). Top the blocks with a blanket if you need to.  Do not let your props force your knees apart. Your ankles  should be tucked in close your hips and your weight evenly distributed over your sit bones.  If your ankles bother you in the pose, a rolled up towel placed under your feet can help.  Rest your hands on your thighs. Some people may benefit from a rolled up towel placed behind the knees.  To come out of the pose, come back to kneeling, remove any props then come to all fours.  Extend your right leg back and press away through your heel. Repeat with the left leg.  


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