Yoga poses are a great way to relax and detox your body, but what if you’re not in the position to practice yoga at home? There is a way that you can still relieve stress and detox your body at home. Using the 7 poses below will help your body to stay clear of toxins and increase your metabolism to burn fat.
Detox is a word fairly common in our lives. But what does it actually mean? For a long time, the word was associated with the idea of purifying the body so that it can get rid of toxins. After all, toxins are substances that have been identified in the body as harmful. A toxic environment is one where many toxins are present, and they are damaging the body.
These days, toxins are building up inside your body, affecting your health. And it’s not just the air, or the water you drink. Toxins are everywhere, and they’re affecting your body from the inside out. The most common toxins are the ones you eat. Think about it: you eat toxins too. Certain foods, like meat and dairy, release toxins into your body that can put you at a higher risk for a number of diseases, including cancer. And the more you eat these foods, the more toxins you put into your body. There has never been a time in my life when I left a yoga class feeling worse than when I arrived. In fact, it is very difficult to come after an hour or 90 minute practice without feeling a warm, fuzzy, loving yogic vibration flowing through the earth’s atmosphere. And if you ask most people who do yoga why they do it, you will hear many things: Because it feels good.
It wasn’t until after the first class that I began to delve more into the physiological aspects of the postures and the benefits of the different classes of asanas that have different positive effects on the physical body.
To build a series of exercises for detoxification, it is important to consider which body systems we can support in detoxification and which asana classes target those systems. Then simply choose a few poses from each asana group, and you have a meaningful and powerful exercise to activate the body’s already powerful detoxification processes.
So, without further ado, here is a quick series of 7 yoga poses that will help you detoxify your body.
1. Seat twist
It’s probably impossible to rotate so far as to suck toxins from the liver, but any pressure and gentle movement of the upper body certainly promotes the downward and outward movement of the digestive system.
And given the important role that elimination plays in removing toxins from the body, we can say: The more we help our digestive system flush waste and toxins through the intestines, the greater our ability to detoxify.
Sit firmly on both torso bones and place the belly behind you (rather than all the way under you) to ensure a long spine. Keeping your feet together, extend to the top of your head and pull your heart forward. Place your right hand on the mat behind you, on your fingertips or flat palm, and clamp your knees or hook your elbow on the outside of your right knee as you turn your chest to the right.
Make sure that both pelvic bones remain anchored in the ground so that the rotation is at the level of the trunk and not at the level of the sacrum. Hold this position for at least 5 breaths, lengthening on the inhale and deepening the movement on the exhale.
After 5 breaths, switch sides.
2. Seated Rotation
To perform this mega twist, first get into a chair pose and make sure your big toes are together and your toes are visible to your knees. Raise the hands in Anjali (Namaste) Mudra to the heart center and hook the left elbow outside the right hip, turn to the right.
Keep your knees aligned and press your palms firmly together to deepen the twist. Unfold the chest upwards and open it towards the thumbs, taking the right shoulder away from the right ear.
After 5 breaths, return to the center. Change sides.
3. Forward bends with abdominal massage
Have you ever seen a mother cat lick her baby’s belly to help it digest? Instead of asking our partners or friends to lick our bellies to feed the digestive fire, we should help ourselves, right?
Squeeze and pressure on the belly is what we look for in forward bends, and adding a mini fist massage is a great way to support the movement.
Standing with your feet hip-width apart, lift your fists into the folds of your thighs. Keep your spine long and strong as you lean forward on your bent or stretched legs, so that the back of your body is completely relaxed and your head and neck hang effortlessly.
If you don’t feel the pressure of your fists on your lower abdomen, tilt your legs so that your lower abdomen rests on your hips and your fists press lightly on your lower abdomen. Then make small circles with your fists to gently move your bowels and help your body remove waste and toxins from your digestive tract.
Stay here for 5 or more breaths, then return to Tadasana, the mountain pose.
4. Sphinx with rolled ceiling
This pose, along with other heart opening poses, are great for compressing the bowels and are among my favorite poses when I feel bloated and lethargic.
Take a blanket or towel and roll it up tightly so that it is at least as wide as your body or longer. Then place it in the middle of the mat so that when you lie on your stomach in a sphinx position, the blanket is just below your navel.
Extend your forearms in front of you so that your shoulders are directly above your elbows and your palms are on the floor. Press your toenails into the mat, send your heart forward and pull your spine out. Close your eyes and take at least 5 deep breaths. Let the blanket perform a little miracle on your digestive system by sending your breath into your stomach.
After a few breaths, move the blanket roll down a few inches toward the pubic bone and repeat the action.
5. Three-legged dog down
Inversions are very beneficial to our bodies in many ways, but they can be difficult to access if you are new to this practice. The three-legged head-down dog pose is an excellent pose to improve circulation and reduce congestion, allowing fresh blood and lymph to be distributed throughout the body.
Start the Downward Dog Stance with a solid foundation: Hands shoulder-width apart, fingers spread and feet hip-width apart. As you inhale, press your hands down hard and bring your right heel behind you.
Keeping your shoulders apart in front of the mat, press your arms down to lengthen your entire body from toes to heels.
Hold this position for 5 breaths, then switch sides.
6. Bend forward, legs apart
Another great inversion for beginners and advanced, which can also be used as a forward bend.
Place your feet about a foot apart, making sure the outside of your feet are parallel to the edge of the mat. Place your hands on your hips and pull the top of your head toward the sky as you inhale. As you exhale, keep your back long and strong by leaning forward, keeping your hands on your hips and resting them under your shoulders on a mat or blocks.
Stand there or begin to pull the hands back so that the fingertips are in line with the toes, and bend the arms at the elbows, supporting them on the wrists. Relax and release the entire back of the body, keeping the kneecaps up to stabilize the base.
Hold this position for 5 breaths, then bring the hands back to the hips and come out of the long spine pose.
7. Legs against the wall
This luxurious and restorative pose can be used as both an inversion and a moment to slow your breathing and calm your mind. Learning to breathe deeply and increasing lung volume is not only important for maximum oxygen delivery to every cell and tissue in the body, but also has a positive effect on stress levels. And when stress levels are lowered, all body systems – physical, emotional and energetic – are better equipped to work in perfect harmony and create a better version of themselves.
A bolster, pillow, or blanket under the sacrum in this position improves inversion and allows for complete relaxation in the position.
Place one edge of the folded blanket against a blank wall. Sit sideways against the wall so that your right shoulder and foot touch the wall. If you are sitting against a wall, position the right side of your lower body as close to the wall as possible so that the bones of your seat are in contact with the wall. Hold this contact as you lift your feet off the wall and lean back into a comfortable position.
You can spread your legs or relax and keep your feet pointed at the clouds – the choice is yours.
Close your eyes, place one hand on your belly and the other on your heart, and focus your attention on your breathing. Follow your breath for a few rounds before deepening it with a counted in and out breathing technique. Take 5 deep breaths through the nose to the bottom of the lungs. Hold the breath in the throat for 5 counts, then exhale slowly through the nose for 5 counts.
Repeat this breathing exercise as long as you have time, giving your body time to be effortless and your mind time to be still.
Try this sequence for yourself and let us know what you think below! Yoga is a great way to relax, unwind and really work out your muscles. It has the added benefit of improving flexibility and toning your body. But how do you do it? What kinds of poses should you practice?