In fact, the environment we all are living in these days like pollen, air pollution, allergies and sometimes vigorous exercise can also trigger Asthma. So, here are few breathing exercises and yoga asanas that will help us to ease out the symptoms of Asthma.
- Sama Vritti/ Square Breathing: To practice this pranayama, sit in any comfortable cross-legged position, your palms will be facing upwards, inhale for 4 counts through your nose and exhale for 4 counts through your nose. If you think, you can’t hold it for four counts each, inhale and exhale for 3 counts each.
Similarly, if you feel you can deepen your breath, you can increase the count to 5 or 6 according to your comfort. This breathing pranayama can be done 5-10 times according to your comfort.
Relaxing Breathing/ Purse Breathing: It is the variation of equal breathing practice only. We do inhale for 4 counts but the exhale process is a little longer. Inhale with your nose and while exhaling, the tongue should be in contact with the pallet of your mouth.
So basically, inhale through your nose and while exhaling, you have to exhale through your mouth. In this when you inhale, your lung capacity increases and when you exhale, the residual air in your diaphragm is exhaled.
2. Anulom Vilom/ Alternate Nostril Breathing: For this, your left hand should rest on your left knee and your right hand will be into Vishnu mudra or pranayama mudra in which the index and middle finger will remain under the thumb. Inhale from left and exhale from the right.
This is one round of it. You can start with 3 or 5 minutes of repetitive rounds and gradually increase it to 20 minutes.
Any kind of breathing technique or pranayama time is in the morning when our stomach is empty. But for any reason, if you can’t practice in the morning then you can actually practice in the evening also.
3. Gomukhasana/ Cow Face Pose: Gomukhasana translates literally as “cow’s face pose.” Go is a root word that refers to the senses, because they nourish the conscious mind, just as cow’s milk nourishes our body.
Mukha means passageway or an aspect of something.
For this, take your left heel and move it to the right hip line and then take your right heel to the left hip line in a manner that you stack your knees on top of each other. Stretch the left arm to the side and fold it behind the back. Stretch the right arm up above the head and fold it over the right shoulder, try to intermix the fingers of both hands.
Pay attention that the same pair of hand and leg will go up. Make sure that the chest is kept open. Gomukhasana is a beautiful asana to expand your lung capacity hence it’s very good for asthma people. One can also add purse breathing/ equal breathing to it.
4. Slamba Bhujangasana/ Sphinx Pose: For this, lie down on your stomach with the forearms flat on the floor, elbows under the shoulders, chin on the floor and legs together. Press the forearms down into the floor and inhale and lift the head and chest off of the floor, keeping the neck in line with the spine. Pull your torso back and off the floor with the support of your arms.
Keep breathing with awareness, as you curve your spine vertebra by vertebra. Ensure that your feet are still close together and head facing straight ahead. Breathing out, gently bring down your abdomen, chest and head back to the floor.
5. Parivrtta Janu Sirsasana/ Revolved head to knee pose: Take your left heel and keep it close to your groin and keep your right leg to your right side. Keep your right palm on your thigh. While inhaling take your left arm up and while exhaling bend yourself to the right and slide your palm. During exhalation, keep on sliding and bending towards the right to deepen down the asana till you reach your limit.
You need to look up and if it’s possible from your left arm to hold your right leg fingers then you can touch that as well. Stay here for 3-5 deep breaths. Come up while inhaling, exhale and release. Repeat the same in the reverse direction.