Having a healthy digestive system is key for overall body functioning. The digestive system helps break down food for proper absorption of nutrients, replenishes and removes waste, and supports productivity and vitality of the body and mind. This system is deeply affected by our stress, sleep, and lifestyle, so it’s important to nourish and nurture your digestion to maintain optimal balance. Yoga is a great tool to keep your digestion running smoothly and to target areas if you’re experiencing any discomfort or discomfort. Here are 16 yoga poses that target digestive health!
Cat/Cow Pose helps to improve mobility in the spine, which is important for proper digestion. It increases circulation to the abdominal area and encourages digestion. For the Cat pose, start on your hands and knees with your back level. As you inhale, drop your belly towards the ground, lifting the top of your head and arching the back. As you exhale, round your back up and feel your spine curve strongly into the upward Cat. Repeat this combination of poses 8-10 times.
Child’s Pose relaxing and calming to the mind and nervous system, while promoting deep relaxation in the body. It also helps to improve circulation to the abdominal area, which can help stimulate digestive juices and aid digestion. To find the pose, kneel on the mat and sit back on your heels. Let your chest lower to the floor and stretch your arms in front of you, palms face down. Take a few moments here to feel the benefits.
Wind Relieving Pose
Wind Relieving Pose is a gentle twist that helps to stimulate the digestive system. Start in a prone position this pose with your chin touching the mat. On an inhale, reach your arms out to the side and then your right leg up. Keeping your right leg up, bring your right arm in towards the chest and your left arm down towards the floor. Hold for 2-3 breaths before releasing the leg back to the mat and then repeating on the other side. This pose is great for targeted stretching in the abdominal area and aiding digestion.
Supine Spinal Twist
Supine Spinal Twist gently stretches the digestive area for improved blood flow and stimulates the internal organs for more efficient digestion. To try this pose, lay down on your back. Bring your knees into your chest and rock side to side to warm up the whole spine. Then extend the legs, allowing them to fall to the side. Keep both shoulder blades firmly rooted to the ground and switch sides for an equal stretch.
The Plow Pose is an inverting posture which stimulates the digestive organs, helping to digestion and detoxification. You’ll need a supportive prop like a bolster to rest your head and shoulders on. To start, lie flat on your back. Bring your legs up, keeping your legs strong and feet flexed. Keeping your back on the prop, bring your feet over your head until your toes touch the floor. Make sure to keep your weight evenly distributed and take a few deep breaths to settle in.