Practicing yoga daily has many benefits. Yoga is good for both mind and body. Yet there is one benefit of this form of exercise that surprises most people – doing yoga daily can actually add inches to your height! Keep reading to find out more about using yoga poses to increase your height and overall fitness.
Yoga has been around literally for centuries. Millions of people around the world practice it to stay healthy in mind, body and spirit. It has only been in the last century that yoga has been introduced here in the West. Many variations can be found worldwide on different yoga poses and techniques; however, the Hatha and Ashtanga Yoga moves have been the same since the beginning of time. Yoga keeps muscles strong and toned, clears the mind and is said to put us in touch with our inner spirit.
Increase Height with Yoga
Perhaps one of the most surprising benefits of yoga is height increase. With daily practice, yoga poses teach us balance and improved posture. As we sit or stand in these poses, our spines are continuously encouraged to straighten. Over time, a spine in which the discs have been compressed by stress, age or injury can be reshaped with yoga. The stretching and strengthening of the muscles supporting the spine can restore the space between the discs, thus making the spine longer. Comparing a person’s height before yoga and after a year of daily practice consistently shows an additional inch or more in the person’s overall physical height.
Yoga Exercises to Increase Height
All yoga poses are healthy. They are restorative, energizing, strengthening and toning. There are some poses that challenge the back, neck and spine specifically, bringing a compressed spine back into proper alignment. These poses will have the most impact on a person’s height; however, it is important to add that a well-rounded practice of a variety of poses is recommended for optimal health benefits. The following list is a few of the poses that really stretch, strengthen and lengthen the spine:
Extended Side Angle Pose
Extended Side Angle pose, or Utthita Parsvakonasana, is a standing pose. Stand with your feet wider than shoulder width, or about 4 feet apart. Turn the right foot out a bit and bend the right knee to 90 degrees. Rest your right elbow on top of the bent knee. As you look up, stretch your left arm up and over so that your torso is leaning toward the right leg which is supporting most of your weight. Really reach with your left arm and you will feel the stretch from your left foot through your leg, hip, side and especially the spine and neck. As you do this pose, it is important to hold your abdominals in and tuck your pelvis forward. Hold for several breaths. Return to center and repeat on the other side. You will notice that every time you do this pose, you will be able to extend further over. This is the result of increased muscle flexibility and spinal decompression, exactly what you want to increase your height.
Revolved Side Angle Pose
Revolved Side Angle pose, or Parivrtta Parsvakonasana is another pose that will challenge you at first, but with consistent attempts you will definitely see a difference in flexibility and spinal length. Start with feet 4’ apart as you did in the Extended Side Angle pose. With your hands in prayer position at chest level, bend the left leg and lean toward it. Rotate your torso facing behind you and place your right elbow on the outside of your left knee. Keep your abdominals pulled in and pelvis tucked under. This is a deep spinal twist and may take several attempts to master it. Remember, never force a yoga pose. With practice, you will achieve it. Come out of the pose slowly and repeat on the other side.
Revolved Head-to-Knee Pose
Revolved Head-to-Knee pose, or Parivrtta Sirsasana is a seated pose. Sit with your feet apart and torso upright. Bend the left knee and tuck your foot in front of you. With arms raised, lean over your straight right leg. Rotate your torso slightly so that as you grab your right foot with your hands, your right arm and shoulder are in front of your right leg. Abdominals should be held in and spine straight. If you can’t reach your foot yet, just lean as far as you can without sacrificing form. You will feel a stretch in your inner thigh, side and lower spine. Remember to keep abs in and pelvis tucked under. Exhale into the stretch. This move will also become easier with practice.
Yoga is amazing. If you are a beginner yogi, consider yourself lucky to be at the start of a wonderful journey as you learn new poses and start to see the many benefits of yoga. You will see remarkable changes in mind and body: increased flexibility and height, higher energy levels and a new clarity of mind that brings peace, serenity and acceptance. Don’t be discouraged if you can’t manage all the poses yet. Make it a goal to keep at it and you will see progress, guaranteed. Namaste!