Winter comes with many challenges. It not only makes your skin feel dry and leads to hair fall owing to excessive dandruff but also makes your body stiff. People with orthopedic issues experience worse symptoms that can be extremely painful. This happens because a drop in mercury makes your joints stiff and reduces their flexibility. One of its major causes is the improper circulation of blood in your body parts. Thinking about how can winter affect your blood circulation. Well, during cold weather, your blood vessels and arteries become narrow. This restricts the oxygen and blood flow to your heart, an organ that pumps harder to circulate blood. This leads to an increase in blood pressure and heart rate. Also, cold weather causes your muscles to lose more heat and contract. This adds to the body stiffness you experience. Also Read - 10 Reasons Why Cocoa Butter is an Effective Arsenal Against All Your Winter Woes

That is why you experience soreness, body ache and joint pain around winter. To get rid of the winter lethargy and problems, you need to hit a yoga mat. Practicing certain yoga asanas for as little as 20 minutes thrice a week can bring big differences. Exercise heats up the body from the inside and releases stiffness from the muscles making you feel active and energetic. Grand Master Akshar shares a few yoga poses that may help deal with these winter woes. Also Read - Winter: People With Heart Problems Are In The High-Risk Category, Here's Why 

Sukshma Vyayam

Start your day with sukshma vyayam. In yoga, warming up of the body starts from the toes and goes all the way up. You can start with ankle rotations, warming up the ankle joints, moving on to your knees, hips, arms, neck, and head. Warming up the body ensures that your productive levels on the mat are high and you also remain free from injuries.

Go Slow

Practice gently and slowly keeping awareness on each movement and syncing your breath along with each posture. When you practice slowly it ensures that you are mindful of your movements and this results in better strength flexibility and a positive outcome overall. Establish the communication between the mind and the body through the breath in a gentle and slow manner. Practicing any movements in a hasty way not only leads to injury but can also harm the respiratory and the nervous system.

Choose your environment

During the winter, choose a warm and cozy place for your practice. If indoors, choose a room or a spot where there isn’t a cold draft in the air. If you are practicing outdoors make sure that you are well covered in warm clothing. Practise is vital to keep your body in good health and in a mobile condition. Practice the following yoga postures:

Yoga Asanas to Keep Winter Body Stiffness at Bay

Cat Pose or Urdvha Mukhi /Adhomukhi Marjariasana: To get into this pose, kneel down placing your knees under the hips and palms under your shoulders. Inhale and curl your spine to look up. Exhale and round your back and shoulders to look at your navel. This asana is good for warming up the spine

Downward Dog or Adhomukhi Svanasana: To form downward dog, you can start in Child’s Pose resting your pelvis on your heels and reaching out in front of you with your forehead on the floor. From here, bring your toes down to push your knees and pelvis up forming a triangular shape with the body. Make sure the distance between the palms and your feet is neither too far away nor is it too close.

Upward Facing Dog or Urdvha Mukhi Svanasana: Come to plank posture and from here gently drop the pelvis and the stomach down without touching the floor. Lift the chest and the shoulders towards the sky and look up. In this posture do not bend your elbows and squeeze the glutes to activate the back muscles.

These are simple and effective postures that can be performed by practitioners of any age. Once you are able to perform these postures with ease then you can add advanced level asanas in your practice such as Wheel Pose, Bow Pose, Peacock Pose, Headstand and so on. Along with your yoga practice, ensure that you monitor your food intake and consume water at room temperature.

With Inputs From IANSLife