Our digestive systems play a tremendously huge part in our overall physical function. A trivial problem may lead to bigger circumstances. Aligned with infamous proverb “prevention is better than cure,” it is important we keep our digestive muscles in shape to maximize their quality tasks.
The drills shared below are found to enhance the flow of our digestive process, mainly peristalsis. It is highly recommended to carry out these drills on an empty stomach or after a light snack. Ensure to hydrate yourself plentily before and after exercising. This will allow your intestinal tract to focus on the remedy.
Drill #1 – Kneeling superman
- Get on all fours, placing your hands directly under your shoulders. Your knees should be under your hips. Straighten your spine.
- Slowly extend your right arm upwards, aligning with your shoulder
- While doing that, slowly lift your left leg so your heel is aligned with your hips
- From the side, you are performing a straight line from the tips of your fingers to your toes with the lifted limbs
- Stay in that position for 15-20 seconds then return to your original position
- Rest and repeat this on the opposite sides
Practise this drill on an empty stomach or after a light snack. Do it gently and patiently to ensure that it really affects your digestive flow positively.
Drill #2 – Downward-facing dog
- Begin on all fours. Inhale and tuck toes under your heels
- Lift your hips upwards coming to an inverted V shape
- Spread fingers and allow your heels to lower as closely to the ground as possible
- Let your head rest between your arms and hold for 6 breaths.
This position makes space in the torso for digestion to take place smoothly, as it assists traction of the spine. This simple body stretch enhances the function of your digestive system. Furthermore, it will greatly relieve any accumulated stress within.
Drill #3 – One knee hug
- Lie down on a floor
- Bend both of your knees into your chest and hug them
- Gradually extend your right leg out straight while still hugging your left knee tightly
- Pause for several seconds and return to original position
- Your head and shoulders should remain in contact with the floor throughout
- Repeat this with the other side of your leg
This drill is found to reduce chances of bloating. The exercising of muscles throughout this drill is also aimed to massage the stomach muscles and overall enhance the process of peristalsis.
Drill #4 – Triangle pose
- Bend knees and step feet leg-length apart, placing right foot at 90 degrees and left foot is slightly turned in (heel to arch alignment)
- Inhale to extend arms out to the side reaching right hand over right leg. Bring your right hand down to the floor. Stack left shoulder on top of right. Lift left arm towards the sky and look up.
- Hold for 6 breaths
- Rest, then repeat with the opposite side
This triangle pose is practised in yoga and helps the flow of our digestive system. Bending and stretching our sides are known to open up obliques. At the same time, when we twist our abdomen we energize the internal organs working within. This includes our intestinal tract and liver, which are part of the digestive system.
Drill #5 – Full body stretch
- Lie flat on the floor
- Extend both your arms over your head, both remain in contact with the floor
- Stretch both your arms and legs as much as you can for 10 seconds
- Rest and repeat this routine thrice
If you wish to carry out these drills after a heavy meal, you should wait for 30 minutes or an hour.