Saturday, January 7, 2012

Do Stretching Poses Improve Indigestion?

Indigestion is a general term typically used to describe an uncomfortable feeling in your upper abdomen. Indigestion includes heartburn or acid reflux, as well as bloating and gas. Over-the-counter remedies and prescription medications can be helpful, as can simple stretching exercises. Talk to your doctor about your indigestion and before beginning any exercise routine.
Seated Spinal Twist
Yoga offers a variety of poses that can be helpful in massaging the abdomen and potentially helping with stomach-related concerns. A seated spinal twist can stretch your spine, shoulders and hips, massage your abdominal organs and improve digestion, Yoga Journal states. Begin by sitting with your legs straight in front of you. Bend both legs to the left, bringing your heels next to your left hip, your left foot resting in the arch of your right. Twist your upper body to the right, turning from the waist and gazing over your right shoulder. Hold for 30 seconds to one minute and repeat on the other side.
Bridge Pose
Another yoga posture that can support digestion is called the bridge pose. It can also reduce stress, stretch the spine and stimulate your abdominal organs. Begin by lying on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor. You can place a folded blanket under your shoulders if needed. Exhale and lift your pelvis off the floor toward the ceiling using your leg muscles. Keep your knees over your heels, and press your arms into the mat. Stay in the pose at least 30 seconds and release your hips slowly back to the mat.
Triangle Pose
Another yoga pose that stretches the abdomen, stimulating its organs and promoting digestion is triangle pose. Stand with your right foot a few feet in front of your left, your right toes point forward and your left toes pointing to the left. Turn your torso to face the same direction of your left toes and hold your arms parallel to the ground. Begin to lean your body forward in the direction of your right arm. Rotate your body so that your right arm points toward the ground and your left to the ceiling, opening up your chest. Breathe slowly and hold for 30 seconds to one minute before switching sides.
Qigong breathing techniques and exercises can also improve digestion by both encouraging relaxation and massaging the abdominal area. In "lying on white snow and keeping body relaxed," you simply lie on your back and rub your abdomen and chest in back-and-forth motions. You can also rub your abdomen in a clockwise direction.

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