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FITNESS A yoga pose to boost your immune system

Nurturing
Boost your immune system now for winter


Yoga
Lee Kennedy


Well, where did that go? I find myself reflecting on just how fast the summer has flown by and how we now find ourselves on the cusp of autumn, and back to the ‘normal’ routine – whatever that is!
For many of us the arrival of autumn and the change in air temperature can make us more susceptible to sore throats, coughs and colds as our body removes old toxins. Other symptoms like sinus congestion, allergies, constipation, diarrhoea and fatigue all signal a possible imbalance within.
Yoga routines in autumn aim to focus on body areas that hold and store excess – outer hips, side waist, back of thighs and the upper chest and shoulder region. By directly focusing on the thymus gland, the heart of the immune system, the following pose, called ‘Setu Bandha’ or Bridge Pose, will open and expand the chest area, helping you achieve optimal health and well-being.

Bridge Pose
  • To begin, lie on your yoga mat
  • Bend the knees, bringing the soles of the feet parallel on the mat close to the buttocks.
  • Lift the hips and pelvis up towards the ceiling.
  • Interlace the fingers behind your back and straighten the arms, pressing them down into the mat.
  • Roll one shoulder under and then the other.
  • Draw the shoulder blades down the back and move the dorsal spine (spine in between shoulder blade area) inwards.
  • Lift the hips higher.
  • Draw the chest toward the chin, but do not move the chin toward the chest. (It’s important here not to move the neck or look from side to side).
  • Make sure the feet stay parallel.
  • Stay in the pose for one to two mins.
  • Release the hands and bring the upper, then middle and then lower back down to the floor.
  • Rest, allowing the knees to rest in on each other.

Lee Kennedy qualified with The BKS Iyengar Yoga Association UK, the YTTC and Ana Forrest of Forrest Yoga. She specialises in pregnancy-related yoga and also studied with Janet Balaskas, founder of the Active Birth Foundation, UK. Visit Yogadara.com or call 0863906343 for more information.

This article is not a recommendation for your own practice but serves as interesting reading  for anyone thinking of going to a yoga class. As with any form of physical exercise, please consult your family doctor beforehand.