Be healthy … mind – body – spirit

Viparita Karani

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Viparita Karani, which means Legs Up The Wall, is my most favourite yoga pose. You may be thinking: What? Legs up the wall is a yoga pose? Yup! You bet it is. And it’s crazy good for you!

As we know, the lymphatic system removes waste and toxins from the body as well as maintains our immunity. The glitch with the lymphatic system is that there isn’t a pump to move the lymph fluid around our body, like the veins and arteries do (they have the heart). The only way to get the lymph fluid moving is by purposefully moving it around. This is done through exercise and voila, legs up the wall!

Take a moment and imagine your own body. You are probably sitting all day at work – like many of us are – and since your lymphatic system doesn’t pump itself, the lymph fluid settles in your feet, doesn’t move and therefore, can’t do it’s job. UGH!

Legs up the wall pose uses gravity and  stimulates the passive flow of lymph fluid and increases the rate of drainage around the body. WoooHooo!

Secondly, your nervous system will get the signal to slow down. And believe me, your stress will melt away!

So you see, not only will your immune system thank you and your stress will be relieved, but here are an whole bunch of other benefits you get from legs up the wall:

  • Calms anxiety
  • Alleviates menstrual cramps
  • Relieves swollen ankles and varicose veins
  • Improves digestion
  • Restores tired feet or legs
  • Relieves mild backache
  • Helps to regulate the thyroid
  • Provides migraine and headache relief
  • Helps relieve insomnia

Here are three ways you can do legs up the wall at home:

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Legs, literally up the wall

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Use a chair to elevate your legs

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Use a block to elevate your legs

It’s best to hold this pose for between 5 – 15 minutes. So get into position, set a timer, close your eyes and let the health benefits wash over you!

Do yourself a favour and try legs up the wall. You won’t believe how amazing it makes you feel!

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Photo’s taken at 889 Yoga & Wellness Spa in Toronto. http://889yonge.com/

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