Coronavirus outbreak has caused thousands of death worldwide and millions of people are infected with this deadly virus. This pandemic has createda big havoc in day to day life andhas disturbed all the routines, be it about work, about health, or about travel.
Many countries are badly hit by this Coronavirus including China, Italy, America, Spain, Iran and more.Currently, the virus outbreak has spread its wings in India and is rising at its peak. It has been advised by Indian Government to stay home and not to go out so that the spread of virus gets halted. You would be already taking important precautions such as washing your hands frequently or using sanitizer, keeping yourself isolated and also maintaining social distancing. It’s now difficult to shun the noise and notifications as we consider the threat of this global pandemic.
All this is causing a fear and stress about uncertainty for everyone which needs to be overcome.It has been observed that the virus is deadly primarily for older age people and kids so they are at more risk. However, during such situations, meditation, yoga,pranayama, Ayurveda, and natural healing are very helpful for mental as well as physical support. This will aid to get a handle on fortifying your minds and bodies with which you can ward off many symptoms of COVID-19 disease. All these practices will help you in maintaining low stress levels and healthy immune system.
How you can take help of yoga during such situations?
As you can’t go out for your regular yoga classes, it could be a good idea to look for the virtual yoga class.Yoga poses for managing stress, yoga for boosting immunity and yoga for better sleep are the most significant to concentrate with respect to the current situation of COVID-19 outbreak. So, let’s get into the details of these poses.
Yoga for Reducing Stress:Yogabrings mind, body and soul in the harmony to bring you in the stress-free and balanced state. There are many yoga poses that can be done to manage stress as mentioned below. If you are a beginner, it is always better to take an expert advice before starting.
- Child’s Pose (Balasana): As the name suggests, this pose looks like a small baby or child. You have to kneel on Yoga mat keeping your knees together and letting your buttocks rest on your heels. After this, hinge forward so that your chest touches to your thighs, forehead touches the mat and both of your hands rest on the floor being straight. You can maintain the pose for 30 sec or 1 min with regular breathing and for 3 to 4 repetitions. This is the most relaxing and revitalizing yoga pose to unwind your mind and body. A resting posture calms the mind to ease the stress. It is also beneficial for a healthy nervous and lymphatic system.
- Easy Pose (Sukhasana): In thisyoga posture, you have to just sit straight, and concentrate on your breath. You can do this asana for 1 min. This yoga pose not only relaxes your mind but also eases your mental and physical fatigue. Being an easy to do, you shouldn’t miss this yoga pose to cure anxiety and stress.
- Standing Forward Bend (Uttanasana): First, stand straight (arms resting on side) with your feet closed.Lift your hands above your head while inhaling and bend your upper body forward while exhaling. Keep both the hands on the ground andyour legs straight. Breathe normally and remain in this pose for 30 seconds then get to the first position i.e. stand straight. You can do around 5 to 10 repetitions of this yoga pose for maximum health benefits.In addition to alleviate stress, Uttanasana also enhances your flexibility, improves blood flow and helps with weight loss.
- Cat Pose(Marjaryasana):Bring your hands and legs on the floor in such a way that your wrists are directly under shoulders and knees are directly under hips. While exhaling draw your belly to the spine, forming a curve that directs towards ceiling. Turn your head down towards floor without the contact of chest and chin. Retain this pose for 30 sec. You can repeat it for 5-6 times to lessen stress levels.
- Down Dog Pose (AdhoMukhaSavasana): Lie down on your stomach so that your body is parallel with the floor. Press your hips up with straight elbows and knees while your toes and palms touch the floor. This leads to an inverted V shaped body which you can hold for 30 sec to 1 min and repeat it for 5-6 times. The pose also improves bone density, blood circulation, eases neck pain in addition to stress relief.
Yoga for Boosting Immunity:
- Bridge Pose (SetuBandhasana):To perform this pose, first lie on your back then fold knees and keep feet hip distance apart (10-12 inches) on the floor. Make sure that knees and ankles are in a straight line. Now, keep arms beside the body and palms facing down. While inhaling, lift your back off the floor slowly.Here, feel your bottom firm up, thighs parallel to each other on the floor. Keep breathing easily and maintain the pose for a minute. Exhale while gently releasing the pose.
- Cobra Pose (Bhujangasana): Lie on the stomach by keeping toes flat on the floor, legs close together and forehead resting on the ground. By placing hands under the shoulders where palms will be downward, keep elbows parallel and nearby to torso. While inhaling, lift your head, chest, and abdomen slowly when the navel would be on the floor. Now, pull your torso back and off the floor by taking support of your hands. Don’t overstretch. Exhale and release the pose.
- Plow Pose (Halasana): For this pose,lie on the back with arms beside and palms downward. Inhale and then lift your feet off the floor by using abdominal muscles. Make sureyou raise legs vertically at 90 degree angle. Breathe normally. Support your hips and back with hands and lift them off the ground. Now, sweep your legs in a 180 degree angle over your head, till toes touch the floor. Back should be perpendicular to the floor. Hold the pose for a minute while feeling relaxed.
- Bow Pose (Dhanurasana):Lie on thestomachwith feet hip-width apart and arms by the side of body.Now, bend knees and hold ankles. Take a breath in, lift your chest off the ground, tweak legs up and back. Focus on your breath and get stable. After few seconds, release the pose while exhaling.
You can also try Fish Pose (Matsyasana),Child Pose (Shishuasana),or Plank Pose to power up your immune system.
Yoga Poses for Better Sleep:
- Reclining Bound Angle Pose (SuptaBaddhaKonasana): For this pose,lie flat on your back and then bring the soles of your feet together where the legs are bent. Keep a pillow under thighs and if requiredkeep behind the head also.Place hands on stomach, close eyes,relax jaws, and bring awareness. Feel the rise and fall of your torso with each slow and deep breath in and out.
- Legs-up-the-wall pose (ViparitaKarani):Here, you should lie down straight on your back. Now, lift one leg up, followed by the next, and let your feet rest on the wall.Lengthen the arms along the sides and palms facing upward. Now close your eyes and keep taking deep breaths while you will be relaxing into the pose. You can stay in the pose as long as you comfortably can.
One of the excellent poses to get rid of tired legs and feet. It also aids inimproving blood supply to the lymphatic system and brain, thereby calming the mind and relieving it of a mild headache.
- Supported Half Frog Pose (ArdhaBhekasana): Lie on your belly with pillows under the belly. Lengthen one leg out to the side and turn it at a 90-degree angle with your kneeand hip level. Bring the opposite leg to straighten and extend behind you. Take your head to turn and rest in the direction of your bent leg. Relax your eyes,belly and jaw. Focus your attention on the nostrils and relish the sensation of breath flowing in and out.
- Supported Reclining Twist: For this pose,lie flat on your back. Bend both legs at a 90-degree angle and turn them to the right. Slide one or two pillows between your thighswith knees stacked and hips level. Outspread your arms straight at shoulder level and turn your head to the left. Closeyour eyes and keep jaw and belly relaxed to focus on feeling the breath flow.
Besides these yoga poses, lying down in Corpse pose (Shavasana), Butterfly pose, Child pose, Cat stretch and doing Yoga Nidra after meals help relax the body.
Moreover, Deep Breathing, Pranayama, and restorative yoga poses does wonder to calm your mind and body.
Natural ways for strengthening your immune system during such pandemic conditions:
- Drink herbal tea: Tulsi is one of the most admired herbs in Ayurveda which can reduce headache, fever and stress. It also provides good oxygen to the body hence aids in clearing lungs. So, it is a good idea to drink tulsi tea to give a must needed boost to your immunity.
- Gargle with warm saltwater: Gargling with warm saltwater will help prevent your sickness by restricting the entry of bacteria and viruses into your bloodstream. This one is the best preventive measure for sickness.
- Get enough good night sleep: Maintaining a cycle of sleep and alertness or we can say ‘circadian clock’ is very essential to make your immune system strong. If your smartphone, laptop or TV is hindering your sleep, get serious about keeping those away on time. You can also look for the yoga poses that will help in getting good sleep.
Take help of any of the above mentioned tips to overcome the fear of COVID-19. Be strong, be safe!