YOGA FOR CONSTIPATION, GAS + BLOATING

One thing i love about the chronic illness community is that we are all pretty comfortable talking about bodily functions even when other people might feel totally squeamish about it. I think spending any amount of time in a hospital will do that to you. The life of the chronic illness warrior is always so glamorous. 

Today’s yoga practice is for constipation, gas and bloating. I used to have chronic problems with constipation and bloting. Fortunately it improved after I went vegan and gluten free, but I still have occasional issues with it. It’s usually how my body responds to new medications and pain killers. And it’s pretty amazing how painful it can be.

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In this video I’m going to show you some gentle poses to help with this problem, and I’m also going to leave a link here for one of my favorite supplements. It’s called Triphala. It is an ayurvedic herb that originated in India, and this stuff is a life saver. It works a bit like a laxative or stool softener but it’s non-addictive and safe to use for prolonged periods of time. I once used it every day for an entire year.....I’m telling you. I really had problems. I highly recommend this herb if you’re dealing with constipation or if you’re looking for a gentle way to support the body’s natural detoxification process. 

I know when you’re constipated or bloated, bending and moving around are probably the last thing you wanna do, but it’s really the best thing for these issues. It might be uncomfortable but we’re gonna work through it together!

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Please consult with your doctor prior to beginning any supplements. 

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MORNING YOGA FOR CHRONIC PAIN & STIFF JOINTS

The first movements and stretches of the morning are always the most stiff, especially when you’re living with chronic pain. A bit of gentle yoga can help lubricate the joints and open up the body so you can move with more ease and take deeper breaths. 

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This short yoga practice uses gentle movement to help the body wake up and release stiffness and pain. The entire practice is done while seated, so you can do this morning routine in bed if you’d like. Perfect for warriors living with chronic pain, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, arthritis, and other chronic pain conditions. This practice ends with positive affirmations to help you start your day on the right note.

3 NEW WAYS TO ENJOY CHILD'S POSE

Not everybody likes child’s pose. For many people, child's pose is a favorite. It's restorative, restful and cozy, and it can relieve pain and anxiety within the space of a few breaths. But it isn't that way for everybody.

As a yoga teacher, I have seen many students struggle to get comfortable in child's pose. Most people see child's pose as an easy pose that anybody can do even if it's their first time on the mat, but the reality is that some bodies just don't like the traditional shape of child's pose. Some bodies just don't want to bend that way, and that is perfectly okay! 

We shouldn't have to modify our bodies in order to fit the shape of our yoga practice, but rather our yoga practice should be modified to fit the shape of our bodies. There is nothing wrong with you if you don't like child's pose! But because this pose comes with so many benefits, let's explore some ways to make this pose more accessible.

 

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Named balasana in sanskrit, child's pose comes with many benefits, including:

  • calming and grounding the mind and body
  • soothing headaches
  • opening the hips
  • stretching the spine
  • relieving lower back pain
  • stretching the shoulders
  • massaging the internal organs
  • soothing menstrual cramps

You can still get all of these amazing benefits with the modified variations of child's pose below. 

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CHILD'S POSE WITH A BOLSTER

Ok, so this variation isn't technically "new," but it is so delicious, it's worth mentioning. If you don't have a bolster, you can substitute a stack of pillows.

Start by coming down onto your knees. If you'd like, you can also place a folded blanket or cushion under your knees and under your hips for extra padding. Take your knees wide. Big toes touch. Bring the bolster between your knees so you can drape your entire torso over the top. These props help to correct the most common problem I see in child’s pose: booty floating way up in the air. Once you’re settled in, turn your head to one side. You can rest here for up to ten minutes. Just make sure that you turn your head to the opposite side halfway through so your neck doesn't become stiff.

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CHILD'S POSE WITH EXTENDED LEGS

For this variation, you will need a bolster and a yoga block. For this variation, you'll lie down on your belly on top of the bolster. Stretch your legs out behind you, and rest your forehead on the yoga block. This option is great for people with knee pain or neck pain, and it still gives you all the benefits of traditional child's pose. You may rest here for as long as you'd like.

 

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CHILD'S POSE WITH CHAIRS

If getting down to the floor is a no-go for you, you'll love this third modification! This option uses two chairs facing each other, a yoga bolster and a yoga block. Sometimes we just have to get a bit creative!

To come into the pose, be seated in a chair with the feet flat on the floor. If they don't reach, use blocks or books to bring the floor to you. Set your block on the chair in front of you and place one end of the bolster on top of the block and the other end between your knees. Make sure it's secure and then drape your upper body over the bolster. You can rest here for up to ten minutes. But again, make sure you turn your head the opposite direction halfway through so your neck doesn't become stiff. 

I hope this pose helps you feel relaxed and supported. You deserve it!

If you'd like to see how to set up and execute these poses, play the video below.

 

 

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