What is yoga for heart and why is it practised?
Your heart is a robust muscle that pumps blood to your body and keeps it going. Like all the other organs, the heart also undergoes several changes in your lifetime, which may lead to ailments. However, the good news is that there are many things that you can do to avoid the risk of cardiovascular problems.
Before we talk about how to keep your heart healthy, it’s good to know the causes of heart conditions. These include:
- Chronic stress and anxiety
- High blood pressure & cholesterol levels
- Physical inactivity
- Poor dental health
While causes such as age and genetics cannot be altered, almost all the other causes can be reduced and prevented. One of the most common ways to reduce these causes is to take medications. While this is an effective treatment, it doesn’t come without side effects.
One of the best ways to prevent and cure heart disease is yoga for heart. As the name suggests, yoga for healthy heart includes poses that aim at improving the health of your heart by bettering the circulation, lowering blood pressure & glucose levels, and preventing obesity.
Which are some of the best poses of yoga for heart?
Here are some of the best yoga asanas for heart explained in detail:
- Tadasana (Mountain Pose): This is not just amongst the simplest yoga asanas for heart but also the most effective. It helps in relieving stress and tension, improves blood circulation, and strengthens the vertebral columns of the heart.
- Stand with your feet slightly apart while balancing your weight equally on both feet.
- Inhale and raise your arms above your head. Do this while interlocking your fingers with palms facing upwards.
- Raise your shoulders towards your ears.
- Exhale and roll your shoulders back down while opening your chest.
- Hold the pose for 10-12 seconds.
- Return to the starting position.
- Bhujangasana (Cobra Pose): One of the most effective asanas for heart, Bhujangasana helps in stretching the heart muscles and improving circulation.
- Lie down on your stomach while keeping your toes flat on the ground.
- Rest your forehead on the ground and keep your legs close to each other.
- Place your palms under the shoulders while keeping the elbows parallel to the torso.
- Take a deep breath in and lift your head, chest, and abdomen slowly. Keep your navel on the floor.
- Pull your torso backwards with the help of your arms.
- Keep breathing and hold the pose for 20-30 seconds.
- Gently bring your abdomen, chest, and head back to the ground.
- Paschimottanasana (Seated Forward Bend): This is one of the best poses of yoga for healthy heart that helps in balancing your heart rate and breathing. This pose of yoga for strong heart works by bringing your head lower than the heart.
- Sit in a comfortable position with your legs stretched out while keeping your spine erect.
- Breathe in and raise both your arms above your head.
- Exhale and bend forward from the hip joints while keeping your spine straight.
- Place your hands on your legs making them reach till wherever comfortable.
- Hold this position for 30-50 seconds.
- Return to the starting position.
- Setu Bandhasana (Bridge Pose): This pose of yoga for heart patients helps relieve high blood pressure. By improving the circulation to your chest muscles, it also works as an excellent pose of yoga for heart blockage.
- Lie on your back in a comfortable position.
- Fold your knees and keep your feet hip-distance apart.
- Your arms should be beside your body with your palms facing down.
- Inhale and gently lift your lower, middle, and upper back off the floor.
- Slowly roll your shoulders and try to touch your chest with your chin.
- Support your weight with the shoulders, arms, and feet.
- Keep breathing deeply and hold the pose for 30-40 seconds.
- Gently come back to the starting position.
What are the benefits of yoga for heart?
Yoga asanas for heart work in more ways than one in keeping your heart healthy. These poses of yoga for heart patients not just cure heart issues but also prevent them.
Here are some of the most important benefits of yoga for heart:
- Some of the major causes of heart issues are increased levels of blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol. Yoga for heart health helps in reducing these very causes by improving your metabolism and promoting artery relaxation.
- Yoga for heart helps in reducing stress and anxiety. This helps calm your mind and reduce palpitations, which benefit your heart health in the long run. This benefit of yoga asanas for heart patients is especially beneficial since it reduces treatment-related anxiety in them.
- Yoga asanas for heart patients help in toning and strengthening your muscles and burning calories. This helps in maintaining your optimum weight, therefore reducing the risk of heart diseases.
- One of the best yoga for heart benefits is that it cures abnormal heart rhythm and irregular beating that may lead to stroke and other heart-related complications.
How to do yoga for heart to avoid injuries?
Here are some tips to keep in mind while doing yoga for heart health. These help in minimising stress and injuries:
- If you have any heart issues, never start doing asanas of yoga for heart without consulting your doctor.
- Always start your session of yoga for strong heart with a warm-up session and end it with a cool-down session. This helps in warming your muscles and giving them a good stretch.
- Never practise yoga asanas for healthy heart after a meal. Always do them in the early morning hours on an empty stomach.
- If at any time during your yoga practice you feel nauseous, palpitation, dizzy, or faint, stop immediately.
- Never perform yoga asanas for healthy heart without learning their proper techniques. You can learn them from a trainer or by joining online yoga classes. This is essential for preventing injuries and muscular strain.
- Never give yourself unrealistic targets. Start your practise slow and gradually build it up while enjoying the process.
It is essential to make holistic lifestyle changes to have a healthy heart. For the best yoga for heart benefits, it is essential to make healthy choices such as choosing not to smoke, eating healthy food, and avoiding stress.