Spring is a wonderful time of year — unless you suffer from allergies and the beautiful blooms and bright green grass reduce you to a sneezing, red-eyed mess.
Yoga can help fight allergies and, combined with a lifestyle that integrates clean eating and mindfulness, help you sail through seasonal sniffles.
Here are three yoga practices to help you keep a clear, comfortable head.
Breath-work has many benefits for allergy sufferers. First, regular pranayama practice increases your lung capacity and flexibility. This helps if you get short of breath or suffer asthma related to allergies. Second, it eliminates stale air and toxins to cleanse and rejuvenate the body. Third, yogic breathing calms the body and mind, reducing stress and inflammation due to allergies.
Going upside down is a great way to clear your head. Inversions like headstand or shoulder stand (step-by-step instructions here) open your nasal passages and encourage drainage through the body. They also promote the circulation of lymph fluid. The lymphatic system transports immune cells through the body and works to detox the blood, helping clear those aggressive allergens.
When you’re down in the dumps from allergies sometimes all you want to do is lie down. That’s fine! Taking some time in savasana is a great way to mindfully connect to your body and encourage self-healing. Breathe evenly and steadily, allowing the sensation of the breath to work through your body and calm any tension. This will help your body integrate the benefits of vigorous postures like inversions while promoting circulation and detoxification. Taking the time to relax in savasana is also a way to signal your mind and body that there is no emergency — allergies are a temporary irritant that will pass.
Share your allergy-fighting tips in the comments!