As anyone with allergies can attest, the symptoms can be incapacitating at times, causing so much distress to your body – especially to your sinuses and respiratory system. Even with prescription medication, allergy sufferers still may not find full relief during the days of peak pollen during allergy season. It’s times like these that those with allergies may wish to consider alternatives to allergy medication to soothe their symptoms. That’s where yoga comes in.
Jane Foody, a professional yoga teacher (ERYT, recognized by Yoga Alliance), recommends practicing yoga to help alleviate the symptoms of seasonal allergies. Foody directs a yoga school in Orlando, Florida and lives in New York. She is also a certified and professional hypnotist and studying to be a Doctor of Physical therapy. In her experience, she has seen private yoga clients specifically for relief from allergies.
To help her clients alleviate their allergy symptoms via yoga, Foody instructs the following steps in sequential order:
“With index and middle finger, massage around the eye socket in circles, (starting between the eye brows, moving down the sides of the nose and through the temples) this massages and breaks up congestion in the sinuses.”
Directions: 8 circles in each direction, roughly about two minutes.
Tip: Remember to your relax jaw here.
“Lay in child’s pose and roll the forehead side to side in order to massage the frontal sinuses and loosen up the congestion.”
Directions: Slowly roll forehead side to side for one to two minutes.
“Bellows Breath – take deep forceful inhalations and exhalations through nose. With each inhalation, the belly blows up like a party balloon and with each exhalation the belly is forcefully drawn towards the spine. This forceful breath powerfully lowers and lifts the diaphragm, which helps push out debris and toxins in the lungs. (A box of tissues is recommended at this stage and frequent stopping to blow nose when needed is a normal response to the bellows breath practice.)”
Directions: Do this breathing for one to three minutes, blowing your nose as necessary.
Warning: Slow down if you begin to feel light-headed.
“Relax the face and jaw and repeat step 2 again.”
Cleanse with Netti Pot.
“Lay on the back in a comfortable position and allow the whole body to become loose, limp, and relaxed from head to toe, remembering to breathe slowly and evenly in and out through the nose.”
Directions: Hold this position and breathing pattern for at least five minutes to allow the nervous system to naturally balance itself.
“Allergies become much worse when we are stressed,” Foody says.
About the Expert:
Jane Foody is an experienced registered yoga teacher and certified hypnotist. For more information, visit online at www.YogaJaneTraining.com.