Yoga is a mental and physical practice that emphasizes the importance of combining proper breathing and exercise. Regular yoga practice helps people improve body and mind awareness. This likewise helps improve a person’s physical well-being as a result of his improved mental health. A yoga routine includes different poses that you need to hold for a few minutes; therefore, it helps build strength, too; as well as enhance respiratory function. Yoga movements also help improve blood circulation while also building muscles.
Those who have not tried yoga yet may say that a few poses and stretches cannot benefit cardiovascular health, but once your try (even for just 15 or 30 minutes), you’ll realize just how intense a yoga routine is. It requires proper coordination of your mind and body.
Here are more reasons why yoga is important for heart health:
1. Yoga helps relieve stress.
When you are stressed out, your heart beats faster and can lead to an increase in your blood pressure. This is why a lot of people suffer from hypertension. If you regularly do yoga exercises, you will learn how to calm down and relax even during stressful situations. It affects the way your body reacts to stress by improving nervous system stress-related imbalances. A good yoga pose that can calm you down is the Big Toe Pose, otherwise known as Padangusthasana.
2. Yoga is good for preventing or reducing instances of AF or atrial fibrillation.
Atrial fibrillation is one of the most common cardiovascular problems in the world. You don’t know when it attacks, so you have to prepare by exercise prevention tips and following doctor’s advice. One of the things you can do, though, is do a yoga routine regularly as it has been proven effective in reducing AF frequency. While patients reported an improvement in their resting hear rate and stable blood pressure levels, the overall effect is a better quality of life, especially health-wise. While it would be best to do yoga every day, two one-hour sessions every week will already be beneficial for you. Ashtanga Yoga or a regular Sun Salutation routine is highly recommended.
3. Yoga helps fight against inflammation.
If you are suffering from inflammation, your body is telling you that you are too stressed out, or you have an injury, or there’s something wrong with you. Since yoga is good for calming the nerves and relieving stress, it can help fight against or reduce stress-related inflammation. A combination of the Mountain Pose or Tadasana, Down Dog, Cat-Cow Pose, Setu Bandha Sarvangasana or Bridge Pose, and Child’s Pose practiced daily will greatly help.
4. Yoga teaches proper breathing.
Proper breathing is important because it has positive effects on your health. For people suffering from hypertension, for example, learning how to breathe properly will help them calm down and decrease the heart and respiratory rate. This is one of the most effective ways to lower blood pressure. In yoga, proper breathing means inhaling through the nose (count to two) and then slowly exhaling though the nose in four counts. This helps you to not only focus on your breath but also to learn how to empty your mind of stressors. For every yoga pose that you execute, do not forget to follow the proper breathing method.
5. Yoga promotes an active lifestyle.
One of the contributors to bad heart health is idleness or the tendency to be inactive. Doing regular yoga exercises can help enhance a person’s flexibility, balance, concentration, and strength. Yoga makes you feel and look good, so you become more confident. Your overall well-being improves, including your cardiovascular health. So, it is not surprising that people who do regular yoga exercises adopt a completely healthy and active lifestyle. They embrace physical activity more than those who spend most of their time lying in bed or sitting on the couch.
Some Yoga Poses You Should Try
The following are some of the yoga poses that are good for heart health:
- The Mountain Pose of Tadasana helps improve circulation while also enhancing focus and calming the mind.
- Uttasana or Standing Forward Bend is good for relaxing after a busy and stressful day.
- The Big Toe Pose or Padangusthasana is good for stretching tight hamstrings. It is also an effective stress reliever.
- Down Dog or Downward Dog is one of the most popular yoga poses. It is also one of the most beneficial. In fact, five minutes of Down Dog in the morning and another five minutes in the evening will be enough of a workout for you.
- Forward Bend stretches the hamstring and the groin. Additionally, it helps you cool down.
- Setu Bandha Savangasana or Bridge Pose is good for your back, your legs, your core, and your hips. Like most yoga poses, it helps calm the nerves.
- Supta Padangusthasana or Reclining Hand-to-Big Toe Pose is perfect if your hamstrings and hips are tight.