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Yoga 101 | Lifestyle: Best Easy-To-Do Poses For Headaches [Pictures]


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After waking up this morning with puffy eyes + dark circles, I was lucky enough to run up on these simple tips for relaxation and relief from headaches. Given that I stayed up all night tossing and turning — needless to say, that also resulted in waking up to a terrible headache.

“Yoga helps to release tension and stress in the body, and the majority of headaches are usually tension-related,” Lynn A. Anderson, Ph.D., doctor of naturopathy and certified yoga instructor, tells The Huffington Post. “Yoga gives the individual an opportunity to slow down and relax, and also really improves circulation throughout the body. Anytime you improve circulation, that improves pain and stress.”

If you experience nights like the one I described above or suffer from headaches on a regular basis, try these easy-to-do yoga poses — and you don’t even have to be a yogi!

“With yoga, you have oxygen and the blood flow going to the brain,” says Anderson. “The majority of your life, gravity is pulling you down towards the earth. Your body flow is all going down and pooling towards your feet. So it’s a good idea to get that flow going up in the opposite direction towards the brain — that’s what we do with yoga.”

Here are 10 (Thanks Huff Post! Again)

Ardha MatsyendrasanaSpinal twists are dynamic poses that awaken many parts of the body, stimulating the digestive system and energizing the spine, according toYoga Journal. Performed with the bottom leg either bent or straight, the top knee is bent and crossed over. Extend the opposite arm to the outside of the leg and gently twist the back. Repeat on the other side.

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JanusirsasanaThe Head to Knee Pose is a forward bend variation that can help boost blood flow and release tension. Bend the left leg in a 90-degree angle and extend the right leg. Lift the arms up and then bend over the extended leg and reach for the toes. Hold for 60 seconds and then repeat with the left leg extended.

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SavasanaSavasana, the final pose of most yoga practices, is all about quieting the mind and completely relaxing the body — which can be hugely helpful in easing tension headaches. You can completely let go in this pose if you close your eyes.

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PranayamaTry a calming breathing exercise to release tension in the shoulders and bring more oxygen into the brain. Sitting cross-legged, draw the shoulders up as high as you can towards your ears as you take a long inhale. And on the exhale, drop the shoulders all the way down. Repeat three to five times, or more if needed.

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ApasanaYou can try this restorative pose by bringing the knees up to the chest and holding the shins about two inches under the knee. Relax in the pose for 30-60 seconds, and then release down. Repeat as needed.

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Viparita KaraniThe feel-good pose helps to quiet the mind and reduce fatigue — two factors which can make a big difference in preventing and reducing the impact of headaches.

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BalasanaChild’s pose — the fundamental resting pose of many yoga practices — can also be a powerful remedy for stress, anxiety and headaches. It helps to quiet the mind while releasing tension from the back and shoulders.

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PaschimottanasanaTake a load off and boost circulation with a calming forward bend. Recommended by Yoga Journal for helping a distracted mind unwind, the pose is performed by sitting on the floor with the legs straight in front of you and feet flexed. Bend forward at the waist and reach the arms straight ahead, relaxing into the pose while keeping the knees straight.

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Garudasana | This modified version of the Eagle Pose, performed either standing in Mountain Pose or sitting cross-legged, relieves upper body tension without the difficulty level of the full pose.

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MarjaryasanaThe beginner-friendly cat pose is a great way to relieve tension in the spine, shoulders and neck, and to boost circulation in the upper body. Begin with your hands and knees on the floor in a tabletop position, and gently round the spine up as you exhale. On the inhale, return to a neutral spine.

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Comments

  1. I have a headache right now and this really helped! LOL
    Erin x

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