Heart problems and heart failures are a very common concern all over the world and the fact that they can be fatal means that one should take every effort to guard their bodies against these dangers. Yoga is a highly regarded discipline that is based on ensuring that the energies of the body and mind are focused in the same direction. There are many different types of yoga that serve to improve certain aspects of the human body. Meditation, for instance, is a major part of the entire yoga experience and plays a vital role in training the human mind to be aware of certain aspects as well as de-stressing the body and mind.
There are a number of variations of yoga for heart patients as well as exercises for heart failure patients that you can incorporate into your daily lifestyle. Kapalbhati breathing is one such form of yoga that requires the individual to rapidly breathe in while also consciously controlling the movement of the diaphragm. One of the most important benefits of this form of yoga for heart patients is that it not only exercises the entire respiratory system, but also ensures richer blood circulation to the cardiovascular muscles in the body.
Practicing yoga brings a deeper awareness of the body, mind and emotions allowing the yogi to become more in tuned with their physical and mental health. Yoga builds cardiovascular health, increases lung capacity, and improves respiratory function and heart rate. It also boosts blood circulation, builds muscle, and decreases inflammation.
Following are four Yoga poses which will help improve your heart health.
- Big toe pose or Padangusthasana: Stand tall with feet hip-width apart, place hands on the hips. Inhale, and then exhale folding forward to grab your big toes or hang forward and grab your opposite elbows. Draw the belly in and lift your sit bones towards the sky. Activate the quadriceps and allow the neck and head to relax down. Bend your knees slightly if your hamstrings are tight. If flexible, draw the torso toward the legs. Hold for 5 to 10 breath cycles. This pose strengthens the thighs and stretches the hamstrings and calves. Calms the brain, relieves stress, and reduces anxiety and mild depression. Therapeutic for high blood pressure.
- Head-to-Knee Forward Bend or Janu Sirsasana: From a seated position with legs extended forward, bend the right knee outward to a 90-degree angle and press the right foot into the inner left thigh. Grab the left shin or foot, inhale, square the hips, and lengthen the torso over the straight leg. Exhale, fold forward slowly from the groins. Extend the spine and lengthen through the chest. Keep your back long and flat you want to avoid rounding of the back. Pull left toes back toward you and extend through the left heel while firmly pressing the right foot into the left thigh. Allow your sit bones to press down toward the floor. Stay here for 5 to 10 breath cycles and switch sides. This pose stretches the spine, shoulders, hamstrings and groin. Calms the brain, relieves mild depression, reduces anxiety and fatigue, and alleviates headaches and insomnia. Therapeutic for high blood pressure.
- Reclining Big Toe Pose or Supta Padangusthasana: Lie on your back with arms along sides and extended legs activated. Rest your head on the floor. Inhale bend the right knee and clasp the right big toe with right fingers. Place the left hand on top of the upper left thigh to stabilize the left leg down. Actively reach through the pointed toes. Exhale straighten the right leg as far as your flexibility allows you to go. Inhale lift the head up toward the right leg and keep the left leg down. Hold for five breath cycles, inhale head back down to the floor, and exhale right leg down. Switch sides. This pose stretches the hips, thighs, hamstrings, groins and calves. Strengthens the knees. Relieves backache and sciatica. Therapeutic for high blood pressure.
- Bridge Pose or Setu Bandha Sarvangasana: Lie on your back. Bend your knees with your feet on the floor hip-width apart. Bring your feet as close to the sitting bones as possible. Inhale press your feet and arms actively into the floor and lift your hips up. Firm, but do not harden the glutes. Clasp your hands together, walk the shoulders down, and press into the floor with your feet and arms. Open the chest and reach the front of your legs and pelvis toward the sky. Hold for five breath cycles, exhale down, and repeat 2 to 3 more times. This pose stretches the chest, neck and spine. Calms the brain and helps relieve stress and mild depression. Stimulates the abdominal organs, lungs and thyroid. Reduces anxiety, fatigue, backache, headache and insomnia. Therapeutic for high blood pressure.
So if you want to help your heart stay healthy
, try these poses to see great benefits.