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Yoga for Bronchial Asthma

The two aspects to be considered in the management are (1) Give immediate relief from an episode after the bronchospasm has occurred leading to respiratory distress and (2) Prevent further attacks.

Yoga is meant to reduce the overall activity of the whole organism through its calming down influence on the entire nervous system and helps all the organs of the body to function at a much lower pace.

In the autonomic nervous system too, yoga reduces the activity in both the sympathetic and parasympathetic. It is because of this effect that yoga can be an answer to many of the stress related disorders which chiefly involve increased autonomic nervous activity.

Because of its great efficacy as a broncho-dilator and the psychological feeling of well being it produces, patients tend to go on using medicines regularly in spite of doctor's advice. Cortisones are most effective as bronchodilators because of their multifold action. But they are very dangerous when used for more than two weeks.

The rules to be followed for good during management of asthma are:

  1. Use the minimum dose for a minimum required period.

  2. Avoid cortisones; even when absolutely necessary never use them regularly for more than a week

  3. Inhalers are better than tablets as they deliver the drugs only locally.

  4. Taper down and stop medicines as yoga takes over.

Step 4: Sasankasana Movement in three stages

  1. Sasankasana movements only (5 times) Bend forward and backward from the waist region while sitting Vajrasana and holding the right wrist with the left at the back.

  2. Sasankasana movement with breathing (5 times)
    Synchronize your breathing with the forward and backward movements. While inhaling bend backward adn while exhaling bend forward.

  3. Sasankasana movement with M-kara (5 times)
    Chant M-kar in a low voice while bending forward to Sasankasana.

Step 5: Relaxation in Tadasana

Slowly come up to Tadasana and relax for about a minute

Step 6: (neck movement in tadasana in 3 stages)

  1. Neck movement only (5 times)
    Move the head forward and backward slowly.

  2. Neck movement with breathing (5 times)
    Synchronize your breathing with neck movement.

  3. Neck movement with M-kara (5 times)
    Chant M-kar in a low voice while bending the head forward.

This article has been written by Dr. R. Nagarathna, Dean, Division of Yoga & Life-sciences, SVYASA
This article is published online courtesy
and Arogyadhama

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