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Yoga for detox

As part of our teaching assessment to fulfill YTT 200hr criteria, we had to create two sequences for community classes, and I trialled one of them recently with my amazing batch mates. I was pleasantly surprised that everyone absolutely loved the sequence and some exclaimed that there was a lot of bowel movement following the class…which made me very happy as that was the intention of my sequence indeed…

I was inspired to create a detox sequence as I was feeling so bloated that week and bowel movement was very challenging that week. This was after the Christmas break we took when we had lots of feasting and merrymaking with lots of foods that’s high in fat and low in fibre so it all makes sense.

While ‘detox’ sounds like a marketing term employed to get more to try a yoga class, let me first make some clarifications. Here when we mention ‘detox’ we do not mean purging the body of any toxins – detoxification in this context refers to removal of wastes from the body, and this is exactly what a detox yoga sequence promotes. We don’t claim to remove toxins from the body by strict scientific definition – please if you are feeling ill, seek professional medical advice!

In a detox sequence, you will find a lot of poses with twists. I incorporated poses such as twisted high-lunge, twisted chair and marichiyasana C in my sequence. The physical action of twisting your torso is actually a form of massage of our guts. While most of the time our muscles are able to contract on their own in a healthy individual, sometimes we just need that extra movement to facilitate after many very unhealthy meals.

I also had some elements of core-drills such as boat pose and twists within the sequence to activate the core area. By engaging and targeting our core and abdominal muscles, it brings blood flow to these areas to generate heat and promote blood circulation. The drills also encourage blood flow in general, and an increased blood flow will help the kidneys process waste in our blood – which is also a form of detox in some sense. The exercise also helps reduce retention caused by excessive sodium intake.

So next time, if you’re feeling slightly constipated or bloated – consider a detox yoga sequence to help you reset!


Justina
200 Hour YTT Oct’20

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