Among the many health benefits of exercise is natural asthma relief. But people with asthma may find some forms of physical activity challenging if they experience exercise-induced bronchoconstriction. That’s why yoga is catching on among people with asthma. Yoga is an all-around stress-relieving technique with gentle stretches and a slower pace than other workouts. Even better, recent research revealed specific benefits from yoga for asthma relief. In an eight-week study of 57 adults with asthma, those in the yoga group showed a significant improvement in lung function and a reduction in asthma symptoms when compared with a control group.
A daily practice of these postures for 15 – 20 minutes will considerably reduce your chances of an asthma attack and may even help you get rid of it. A few minutes spent meditating will also enhance your experience and help calm your mind.
Here’s a list of few basic breathing techniques and yoga postures to help you counter asthma more effectively:
- Yogic Breaths Pranayama
- Nadi Shodhan pranayama (Alternate nostril breathing technique)
- Kapal Bhati pranayama (Skull shining breathing technique)
- Ardha Matsyendrasana (Sitting half spinal twist)
- Pavanamuktasana (Wind relieving pose)
- Setu Bandhasana (Bridge pose)
- Bhujangasana (Cobra pose)
- Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward-facing dog pose)
- Badhakonasana (Butterfly pose)
- Poorvottanasana (Upward plank pose)
- Shavasana (Corpse pose)
Your control over asthma will let you choose how much you enjoy your life. With a potent shield like yoga, you can experience life in its totality and be carefree. Yoga lets you expand your capabilities and live life to its fullest.
Yoga practice helps develop the body and mind bringing a lot of health benefits yet is not a substitute for medicine.
Clinical Effects of Yoga on Asthmatic Patients: A Preliminary Clinical Trial
A preliminary controlled clinical trial study was conducted on 24 volunteer asthmatic patients who were getting support at the missionary of charity. They were grouped in yoga and control groups. An Indian yoga expert through a translator conducted the training on yogic practice, yogic posture, breath slowing technique and discussion at the end. Then, the yoga groups were supervised for four weeks taking yoga exercise daily for 50 minutes. Peak expiratory flow rate was taken using the mini Wright peak flow meter and vital signs were measured in both groups. Data were analyzed using web based Graph pad quick calcs statistical software.
The male to female ratio was 1:1 in both cases and control groups, 8(66.7%) were Christian and 9 (75.0%) were farmers. The yoga group showed 66.7% reduction in the use of salbutamole puff and 58.3% salbutamole tablets. There was a 10% increment in the PEFR in the yoga group while only 2% in the control group. There was statistically significant reduction in day and night asthma attacks in the yoga group.
Yoga exercise among asthmatic patients resulted in a decreased number of day and night attacks and use of drugs. It also shows significant improvement in the peak expiratory flow rate. Further large scale study is recommended.