Yoga Poses That Help with Indigestion While Travel Nursing

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By Kosta Miachin

May 14, 2018



5 Yoga Poses That Help with Indigestion While Travel Nursing

Long trips can really mess up our body’s natural rhythm. This is especially true when we travel into a different time zone. The bigger the change, the more under the weather feel.

Not only will our day-night rhythm be out of sync, keeping us awake at night, a jet lag can cause headaches, nausea, and indigestion. Sometimes we can’t relieve ourselves for days.

But not only occurs this phenomenon when traveling into a different time zone but also when simply traveling to a new place. Sleeping in a different bed, eating unfamiliar food – A change in the environment is often enough to put our digestive system completely on hold.

You will be happy to hear though, that there are some tricks that can help you get your bowel movements back on track within a short period of time.

Next to eating a nutrient-dense diet, rich in fiber, there are many yoga poses that are known to activate your digestive function and get you some release.

Another good news is: You don’t have to be an experienced yogi performing crazy bends to get the benefits. The 5 yoga poses listed below are very straightforward, so no matter if this is your first attempt at yoga, or you’re a regular practitioner, enjoy them and keep breathing regularly throughout the practice, as I cannot stress enough the effect deep belly breaths have on our digestion.

Yoga Poses

1. Marjaryasana – Bitilasana (Cat – Cow Pose)

 Cat and Cow are usually practiced together in a flow. Come onto all fours into tabletop position. Make sure your knees are right above your ankles and your shoulders are above your wrists.Spread your fingers wide and press your hands firmly into the mat. On your next inhale, drop your belly and arch your spine, roll your shoulders back and look up to the sky (Cow). On the exhale press into your hands, drop your tailbone, pull your belly button towards the spine, gaze to the navel (Cat). Repeat this movement for 10 more rounds. When in Cat, really suck in your belly, which helps massaging your organs and your digestive tract.

2. Ardha Matsyendrasana (Half Lord of the Fishes)

 Twists are a great way to get our digestion moving. For Half Lord of the Fishes pose, sit on the mat with legs extended to the front, keep a straight spine. Then bend your right leg and cross it over the left leg, sole of the feet on the floor. The right knee is pointing up towards the sky. Bend your left leg and bring your left foot next to your buttock. If this stretch is not available to you, keep your left leg extended to the front. The effect will be the same, so don’t worry about it.

On your next inhale straighten your spine, lift your left arm and place it to the outside of your right thigh. Plant your right hand right behind your buttocks, twisting to the right side. Make sure you keep your chest open. Use your in-breath to lengthen the spine, and the out-breath to twist a bit further by sucking in the belly, then twisting the upper back, then the shoulders. Move gently and with your breath, and after about 10 breaths, turn back to center and twist gently to the left as a counterpose for one breath.

Repeat on the other side.

3. Dhanurasana (Bow Pose)

Let’s warm up our spine by coming into Locust Pose first: Lie down flat on your belly, extend your arms to the front alongside your ears, your legs are extended to the back. On the inhale lift your arms and legs off the mat. Gaze is towards the mat. Take 4 – 6 deep breaths into the belly, feel it pressing into the mat, massaging your organs. Release arms and legs back onto the mat. Bring your arms alongside your body and turn one cheek onto the mat, relax here. Repeat Locust Pose one more time.

Moving on to Bow Pose: Still on your belly, bend your knees, reach back with both arms and grab the outer edges of your feet. On the next inhale, press your feet into your hands. You will feel your torso lifting slightly off the mat. Maybe your thighs are coming off the mat, but if they don’t – no problem. Breath deeply into the belly and let your breath rock your body gently to the forwards and backwards. This is where the magic happens, activating your bowels.

Hold for 4 – 6 breaths, then release the grip on your feet and slowly lower your torso down onto the mat. Place the other cheek on the mat and relax. Repeat Bow Pose one more time.

Counterpose: When you feel your spine has reset – push gently back into Child’s Pose.

4. Ardha Pavanamuktasana (Wind-Relieving Pose )

 Come to lie flat on your back with both legs extended. Bend your right knee and bring it into your chest. Hug the knee with your arms. Now with every exhale, bring your knee closer to your chest. Take about 10 deep, conscious breaths here, then repeat on the left side. We start this pose with the right leg, as our movement follows the direction our food travels in our digestive tract.

When you’ve done both sides, bring both knees into the chest, and feel the belly pressing against your thighs. Then release your legs back onto the mat.

5.Supta Matsyendrasana (Supine Spinal Twist)

 Stay on your back. Bring your right knee back into the chest as described in the Wind-Relieving Pose, then lead your knee over the left leg, with the right hip lifting off the mat. If the right knee doesn’t come all the way down to the floor, place a folded blanket or rolled-up towel underneath it for support.

Arms are spread to the sides, both shoulder blades are glued to the mat. Gaze goes either towards the sky or over your right shoulder. Take 10 deep breaths into your abdomen here, and with every exhale relax a little bit more into the twist. When done, bring your knee back up into the chest, give it a little squeeze and extend it alongside the left leg.

Repeat with the left leg.

The great thing is, you can do all the above yoga poses on the floor of your hotel room, or even on the beach. If you really can’t find any space, you can always do them on your bed.

Keep your body well hydrated and trust the effect that these yoga poses have on your digestive system. They have helped people already for thousands of years.

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