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7 Yoga Poses to Help You Kick that Cold

Fall is upon us and when seasons change many of us come down with a cold, leaving us totally exhausted and unable to breathe easy. So what do you do when you still want to stay committed to your yoga practice? Many yoga teachers will advise that you stay home, preventing your cold from spreading-- it is a courtesy to your teacher and to fellow students. That said, there are some simply yoga poses you can do at home (with Yoga Wake Up or using the following as a guide) and actually, we think these poses will even have a positive effect on your symptoms! Just make sure to always be conscious of your body. If you have a fever and are feeling achy, the best thing you can do is rest.

Otherwise, try these 7 yoga poses to boost immunity, relieve sinus pressure, open airways in your lungs and throat, ease tension in the body and get you feeling relaxed and rested so you can kick that cold for good!

Uttanasana (forward fold)

Uttanasana is known to enhance blood circulation. It helps to send a new batch of blood to the head, thereby clearing out blockages and sinuses. It invigorates the nervous system and relieves stress and tension. That said, if you feel uncomfortable sinus pressure upon bending over, you can also practice this pose seated. While seated, you can also place a pillow under your head in between your chest and your legs and just rest in this restorative shape.

Ustrasana (Camel pose)

The heart opener Camel Pose opens up the chest and clears out all the passages. It is essential to try and breathe as much as you can while you are in this pose. This will help open up all the blocked areas that are causing the cold.

Viparita Karani (Legs up the wall)

The Legs Up The Wall Pose is a great pose to practice to counter respiratory ailments. When you practice this asana, you will realize that you are relieved of the headaches or backaches that accompany a cold. Practicing this asana calms the mind and relaxes the body. Plus, if you can’t breathe very well, this is a nice alternative to a forward fold. Any fluids in your legs will flow away from your feet to give them a break, and reverse blood and energy flow for increased circulation.

Setu Bandasana (Bridge pose)

Supported Bridge will open up your back and chest in a gentle way, especially with the aid of a yoga block or pillow. This restorative pose also revitalizes tired legs and stimulates your lungs, thyroid and digestion.

Modified Jathara Parivartanasana ( Reclined Twist) Reclined twist is a great pose to do anytime throughout the day to release physical and stress-based tension. It also lengthens the spine to provide relaxation throughout the body. Known to improve digestion, this can be helpful while you're sick to improve nutrient absorption in the body when you're otherwise feeling sluggish. We hope that you stay well this fall season and one of the best ways to do so is to practice regularly, even just 15 minutes a day, take good care of yourself (see our recent Radical Self-care feature with Elephant Journal) and keep your immune system strong by consuming healthy foods and getting the rest you need. However, should you find yourself feeling under the weather, these poses will come in handy. The best part... you can do ALL OF THEM from your cozy bed. Namaste.