Yoga to your rescue
From stretching your body to cooling it down, several yoga postures and breathing exercises can help you beat the summer heat
Yoga is a gift that has been passed down generations for centuries. Not only is it a good way to exercise each and every part of your body, but also a cheap one. Yoga has always been the go-to exercise when you want to shed a few kilos swiftly. But it can be used for several other reasons too, cooling yourself down is one of them. City-based Yoga guru Yogesh Chavan tells us how yoga can be used to beat the heat and stay cool this summer.
Summers are known to be harsh on people, physically and mentally, and it is extremely important that people take good care of their well-being this season. The heat from the sun can lead to exhaustion. “It tends to sap out a lot of our energy which leads to dehydration,” says Chavan adding that dehydration can lead to further health complications. Yoga, he says, boosts immunity and helps the body fight illnesses. An ancient form of exercise, Yoga involves asanas that target every body part and organ in the human anatomy.
Pranayama or breathing exercises, Chavan says help in keeping the body cool. “Jivha Sheetali Pranayama can be followed regularly in this heat,” he adds. It’s practised by sticking your tongue out, rolling the lateral edges upward so that your tongue forms a tube, inhaling through the curled tongue, and exhaling through your nostrils. The daily practice of this Pranayama can calm the mind along with the body, making the summers slightly more bearable, helping people keep their tempers in control.
Yoga also aids blood circulation. “This is mainly because of exercising the body parts which ensures adequate supply of oxygen and nutrients to every cell in the body,” he explains.
Chavan points out that the most effective time to perform Yoga is early in the morning or in the evening. The position of the sun plays an important role in yoga. “But it can be practised at other timings too,” Chavan suggests, adding that the only golden rule to be followed is to keep a gap of about three hours between a meal and doing these asanas and keeping the timing consistent.
Which yoga positions are the best to cool down? “Padmasana or the Lotus pose which is a cross-legged yoga posture helps in alleviating physical ailments. The Bhramari Pranayama produces a sound similar to the humming of a bee, and has a soothing effect on the brain,” he answers. Among the others are Parvatasana or mountain pose — it is a full-body stretch which improves blood circulation, Makarasan which is widely known as Crocodile pose is helpful in relaxing the mind and body, and Vajrasan and Shavasan too help in calming oneself down,” Chavan adds. “It is advisable that along with yoga, one also goes swimming,” he says.
Chavan points that while there is no need to follow a specific diet, it is best to consume foods rich in fibre and easy on the digestive system.