No need to head out to a detoxifying hot yoga class every night. You can do these 3 simple and effective yoga poses in the comfort of your own home.
Yoga consists of many bends, twists and deep stretches which help to circulate your blood and cleanse toxins through your lymphatic system.
Daily movement, be it a light walk, a workout class or a yoga class encourages you to create heat in your body and sweat, which is a highly effective way of eliminating toxic build up, and also effective for supporting cardiovascular health.
Do these 3 poses below while focusing on your breath. Inhaling deeply through your nose, extending the belly, and exhaling through your nose, pulling the belly button to the spine. Focusing and your breath will allow you to stretch a little deeper and encourage a deep detoxification through your lungs.
Wide-legged Forward Bend
This pose forces your head to hang below your heart, which reverses the pull of gravity, circulating your blood and cleansing through your lymphatic system. While folded forward, be sure to breathe deeply and keep the belly tight to aid in digestive support. This pose will also help open up tight hamstrings, calves, and encourage a lengthening of the spine.
- Stand with your feet wide apart, heels turned out slightly wider than the toes, grounding down through the outer edges of your foot. Standing tall, interlace your hands behind your low back, pressing the heels of your palms together in a double fist.
- Take a deep breath in, and slowly fold forward at the waist, leading with your chest, straightening your arms and lowering your hands as far as you can towards the floor. Let your head hang, keep the spine long and straight and breathe for five to six long deep breaths. Engage your legs, inhale, and slowly rise up to stand.
Seated Spinal Twist
Twisting poses are great for supporting the internal organs and supporting digestion. This pose can help to aid in the elimination of waste through the bowels as the twist works the small and large intestines. Breathe deeply and go as deep as you can with control and without over extending yourself.
- Begin seated on your mat with your legs extended in front of you. Bend both knees, and place your left heel as close to your right sit bone as you can. Cross your right foot over your left knee, and plant it on the floor so your outer right ankle is next to your left knee.
- Reach your right arm behind you, and place your palm on the floor, close to your sit bone. You can press your hand into the mat to help engage your twist. Cross your left elbow over your outer right thigh to gently increase the twist.
- Take your gaze behind you and over your right shoulder, staying here for five to six deep breaths. Then release the twist, straighten your legs out in front of you, and repeat on the opposite side.
Legs up the Wall
This is my favorite pose, especially if you’ve been on your feet all day. This poses reverses the pull of gravity and forces your circulation to flow down your legs. This is a great pose to do if you are jet-lagged, stressed and need a boost of energy. It will force the blood to flow through your body and to your head, which is great if you suffer with headaches. This inverted pose will also help with the elimination of toxins that are congested in the lymph nodes and any congestion and swelling in the ankles.
- Bring your yoga mat to the wall and scoot your sit bones close to the base of the wall. Swing your legs up the wall and keep your sit bones close to wall. Depending on your comfort level, you may need to inch you sit bones slightly farther from the wall.
- Allow your arms to relax to the side of your body with your palms facing up. Your head and shoulders should be gently relaxed on your mat.
- Alternatively, you can fold a blanket and place it under your low back to offer additional support.
- Breathe deeply for five to six breaths. Your legs will start to feel heavy at some point. Gently bend your knees and continue to breathe. Feel free to stay in this pose longer than five breaths.
- When you are ready, gently let your legs fall to one side and gently push yourself away from the wall.
Remember to be gentle with yourself and never over extend or push yourself to hard through a pose. Allow your breath to guide you through any discomfort.
Practice these poses a few times a week to assist in detoxification and support overall health.
Samantha graduated as a Registered Holistic Nutritionist from the Canadian School of Natural Nutrition; is a Hatha Yoga Instructor, Qualitarian Pioneer & holds a Bachelor Degree in World Religion and Arts.