5 Yoga Poses for Migraine Headaches

People doing yoga

Anyone who has ever experienced migraine knows how sharp the pain becomes, how blinding even the smallest light seems, and how quickly it brings about a wave of confusion and helplessness.

Studies show that approximately 18% of women and 6% of men in the United States currently suffer from migraine. It’s no surprise that more than 90% of those who experience migraine are physically unable to continue with daily functions of life; simple tasks that the average person would take for granted.

Even more disturbing is that 14 million people must battle with these types of headaches nearly every single day.

“It is an extremely debilitating collection of neurological symptoms that usually includes a severe recurring intense throbbing pain on one side of the head,” says a spokesperson for the Migraine Research Foundation. “Attacks last between 4 and 72 hours and are often accompanied by one or more of the following: visual disturbances, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, extreme sensitivity to sound, light, touch and smell, and tingling or numbness in the extremities or face.”

Imagine going about your day with the constant fear of knowing that at any moment, a migraine could strike. Your entire life could be thrown off track.  Aside from medication, is there anything that can be done to fight against migraine so you can return to enjoying your life? Consider yoga.

How can yoga help?

Yoga is an ancient form of exercise and philosophy. It is a means to achieving balance within your mind and body. The health benefits of yoga are extensive including:

– Improving posture

– Eliminating muscle imbalances

– Reducing stress levels

– Lowering blood pressure and heart rate

– Improving your physique

Yoga is also an amazing solution to relieving the pain and symptoms of migraine. The stretches in yoga help to lengthen tight muscles that could be contributing to migraine.

Listed below are the top 5 yoga poses that have been shown to reduce or eliminate migraine pain. If you’ve ever taken a yoga class before, then all the movements listed should be familiar to you. It is recommended that you perform these movements on a daily basis, preferably in the morning.

Hold each pose for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Start off with one set for each, gradually progressing to doing two or three sets each time.

1. Downward Dog Pose

This standing pose is one of the most common. It will allow you to perform a deep stretch on your calves, hamstrings, hips, lower back, shoulders, and arms. As it is considered an inversion pose, it is often recognized as a great way to alleviate pain from headaches or migraine.

– Begin on your hands and knees.

– Place your hands a few inches forward. Press your palms directly into the mat.

– Bring yourself to your toes then extend your heel back.

– Your feet should be shoulder-width apart.

– Press your hips back and toward the ceiling. Your body should resemble an inverted V.

– Keep pressing your shoulders away from ears.

– Press and hold this position.

2. Seated Spinal Twist

This yoga movement helps to stretch out tight muscle of the hips, core, and lower back.

– Sit with your left leg extended and your right knee bent in.

– Place your left elbow against your right knee.

– Place your right hand behind you.

– Inhale and sit up tall, then exhale and push your left elbow against your right knee.

– Gently twist and hold this position.

3. Head to Knee Pose

This classic pose will ease tension in the calves, hamstrings, lower back, shoulders, and neck.

– Sit on the ground with your legs extended in front of you.

– Take your left foot and bring it in towards your hips – Rest it on the right inner thigh.

– Place both arms overhead and slowly bring your arms forward.

– Wrap your hands around your right foot.

– Hold this position.

4. Child’s Pose

A favorite pose that allows you to stretch while getting ready to bring your sitting session to an end. This pose stretches the lower back, upper back, shoulders, arms, and sides of the body.

– Kneel on the ground.

– Bring your hips back and let your butt sit on your feet.

– Bring your head down as you extend arms forward.

– Relax and drop the shoulders.

– Feel the stretch and hold the pose.

5. Corpse Pose

The final pose in many yoga classes. The focus is on stress relief through relaxation, concentration, and deep breathing.

– Lay flat on your back.

– Let your feet fall out to the sides.

– Extend your arms slightly away from your sides.

– Let your palms face upward.

– Keep your eyes closed.

Focus solely on your breath as you relax. Once you are finished, remember to drink plenty of water to help flush out any toxins. Now go and get ready to enjoy a migraine free day!

Enjoyed this article? Try reading these as well . . .
Is This A Headache Or A Migraine?
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