Protect your back and neck with these yoga postures

Published: Updated On – 06:37 PM, Fri – 29 July 22

Protect your back and neck with these yoga postures

Hyderabad: You have started preparing for TSPSC exams, chalked out your schedule and planned meals that don’t make you sleep. But have you kept aside time for meditation and yoga? Over time, studying for long durations can affect your mind and body significantly. It’s important to balance yourself with breathing exercises and do yoga postures that strengthen your spine and protect your neck.

Ravindra Kapadia, who has been a yoga practitioner and teacher since 1992 at Gandhi Gyan Mandir Yoga Kendra in Koti, shares some beneficial poses for students preparing for TSPSC.
It is ideal to do yoga first thing in the morning on an empty stomach for at least 10 minutes. Students can also perform these yoga postures in the evening.

Salabhasana

The ‘salabhasana’ can help people who have back issues due to being hunched over books for hours. “It can relieve back pain, fix an abnormal curvature of the spine and prevents slouching. It strengthens your back muscles, especially your spine, pelvic organs, legs, hip joints and arms,” explains Ravinder Kapadia.

Steps:

Exhale and in 3 seconds, raise the right leg (kept straight) as high as possible without lifting the hips; keeping the left leg firmly on the ground. While raising the leg, secure the palms and contract the lower back muscles. Maintain this pose for six seconds and suspend the breath in the final pose. Return to starting position, then inhale and in 3 seconds, gently bring the raised foot down. Follow the steps with the left leg. Then perform the ‘asana’ raising both legs simultaneously, while exhaling to complete one round.

Markatasana

Also called monkey spinal twist pose, this is another posture which helps alleviate lower back pain. It also improves memory and calms the body.

Steps:
Lie down straight on your back. Spread both hands at the level of your shoulders and keep palms open. Now fold your right leg and while inhaling, turn to the left side as much as you can. Turn your neck to the right side and hold this position for a few seconds. Now while exhaling, come to the starting position. Keep your right leg straight and fold your left leg. While inhaling, turn your left knee to the right side as much as you can and turn your neck to the left side. Hold this position for a few seconds and while exhaling, come back to the starting position. Repeat this for 10 times.

Bhujangasana

“Called the cobra pose, it is a backbend that helps alleviate tightness in shoulders and soreness in upper body. It’s also helpful for those who do computer work all day. It improves posture, fights fatigue and builds confidence,” says Ravinder. He advises doing the ‘asana’ slowly to avoid straining your back and neck.
Steps:
Begin on your belly with your feet hip-distance apart and your hands beside your ribs. Extend your big toes straight back and press down with all ten toenails to activate your quadriceps. Rotate your inner thighs toward the ceiling to broaden the lower back. Pressing down lightly with your hands, start to lift your head and chest, rolling your shoulders back and down. Keep the back of your neck long and focus on lifting your sternum instead of lifting your chin. Straighten your arms while keeping your shoulders remaining away from your ears. Keep at least a slight bend in your elbows. To exit the pose, release back to your mat.

Pranayama

Students can also calm their mind and body with meditation. Ravinder suggests ‘Bhramari pranayama’ for aspirants. “Students are tense and anxious over this exam. This is a breathing technique that gives instant relief from tension, anger and anxiety. This type of ‘pranayama’ also improves concentration, memory and helps build confidence,” adds Ravinder. But he suggests learning this particular technique under a yoga teacher than doing it at home.