Yoga & Urinary Tract Infections

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Urinary tract infections, often called cystitis, are a relatively common condition that can cause an increased desire to urinate and pain when doing so, pelvic and abdominal pain and a general feeling of being unwell, according to the NHS Choices website for England’s National Health Service. While yoga may not cure this condition, it can ease the symptoms, promote relaxation, boost your overall immunity and stimulate the affected area, notes HolisticOnline.

About Urinary Tract Infections

This condition can affect any part of the urinary tract, including the kidneys, bladder and urethra, which is the tube through which urine travels from the bladder to the outside of your body, reports NHS Choices. Women are more likely to develop a UTI than men, and the condition can often develop after sexual intercourse. Fortunately, most cases are not serious and may be treated with a short course of medication. However, if your symptoms persist, you should see a doctor.

Yoga Posture for the Kidneys

This posture is known as Big Toe Pose or Padangusthasana, and its benefits include stimulating the kidneys and relieving stress, says "Yoga Journal." Start by standing up straight with your feet about 6 inches apart and the insides of your feet parallel. Contract your thigh muscles and bend over from your hip joints, keeping your head and torso aligned as you hinge forward. Wrap your index and middle fingers around your big toes from the inside then inhale as you straighten your arms and lift your head and torso in a straight line. As you exhale, fall forward again, pulling gently on your big toes to increase the stretch. If you are flexible, you can bring your head to your shins, but make sure your back remains straight at all times. If you can’t reach your toes, wrap an exercise band under your feet and hold on to it firmly.

Yoga Posture for the Pelvis

According to "Yoga Journal", Lotus Pose stimulates the pelvis, abdomen and bladder and helps ease menstrual pain, which can affect the same areas as a UTI. Sit on the floor with a straight back and cross your legs yogi style --that is, with the outside of your right foot resting on your inner left thigh and the outside of your left foot resting on your inner right thigh. You may need to wriggle your hips to get into this position. Use your feet to press your thighs and groin into the floor. Keep your back straight and lift through the chest as you breathe into the posture. Beginners should only stay in this pose for a few seconds before resting. Be sure to repeat the exercise with your legs crossed the other way too.

Yoga Posture for the Abdomen

Bharadvaja's Twist gently massages the abdominal organs -- which are affected by a UTI -- and helps relieve stress, says "Yoga Journal." Start by sitting on the floor with your legs straight out in front of you, then lean over onto your right hip and bend both legs so your feet are positioned just outside your left hip. Your left ankle should be resting in the arch of your right foot. Inhale and lift up through your torso then, as you exhale, slowly twist to your right. Place your left hand on your right knee and pull your left shoulder back as you twist to help keep your back straight and your chest lifted. Twist a little more with each exhalation, pressing your tailbone into the floor and keeping your stomach relaxed. Repeat by bending your legs to the right and twisting to the left.