Yoga and tinnitus
If you recall, in my previous post reviewing the P90X extreme workout program, I mentioned the yoga program was crucial in helping me with the ringing in my ears. I feel that yoga and tinnitus is a combination that is absolutely necessary. I would like to discuss the actual getting into yoga, the hurdles that one faces or the challenges involved and the actual timeframe to get your body and mind accustomed to this wonderful exercise.
Ok, for me yoga is far from an exercise routine, that one just gets done and over with, and moves on. Nope, apart from being just about balancing and stretching, yoga commands the attention to the mind. Its about placing your attention on the mind and clearing it, and focusing on just the present moment.
Time for some Fun!!
Allow me to indulge you here, lets do a little experiment on focusing on the present moment.(All I need is one minute of your time))
- First grab your phone or alarm clock
- Next, set the timer to one minute
- Place your device close-by, so that you can hear it when it buzzes off.
- Now sit in a comfortable place and close your eyes.
- Wait!!!! DONT CLOSE Your eyes just yet….
Before you close your eyes, your task is to think of nothing but the present moment for one full minute. Are you ready?Dont worry, I will be right here when you get back.
Ready, Steady and Go!!!!
Welcome back, how did it feel?
I am betting that you had thoughts racing wildly through your mind over that one minute. Your mind was everywhere but in the present moment.Maybe thinking about food, what you going to do tonight, stuff you’ve done or still need to do, the person who made you happy or upset you, or even when is this one minute going to end???
Did you know? that there are 60 000 thoughts that go through our mind on a daily basis. Sheww!!our minds are really working, so to focus on any one thought for some time may sound impossible. But with regular training, like anything else in life, this is both achievable and possible.
Anyway coming back to the point, unlike dancing or regular workouts, Yoga is all about being in the present moment. It is meditative.It is calmness of the body and mind, and to achieve this, requires practice and time. Trust me, I have been doing this for some time. It is a process, whereby you get to work on yourself and it is a wonderful journey that benefits both your body and mind.
Did you know?
I have heard of stories, where with years of discipline, practice and off course guidance, the Yogi masters/Monks were eventually able to regulate their heartbeat to such a point that their overall bodily function and metabolism slowed down to its minimal rate, and nourishment with just a grape and water, was sufficient enough to provide sustenance for the body. All this is achieved by being in the present moment and having absolute mind power. However such a feat would be extreme in this day and age, and I would not recommend anyone to try this.
Is yoga good for tinnitus?
Okay, we know that tinnitus is highly subjective and the intensity varies from person to person.We also know that there are a many aggravating factors that contribute to this intensity. These include things like salt, alcohol and stress. So by simply trying to minimize these aggravating factors, we can help keep the tinnitus under control.
Yoga is very de-stressing. It involves balancing and stretching and most importantly ‘focused breathing.’
What do I mean by this?
When you do postures like ‘Upward dog,’ Downward dog,’ or ‘Vinyasa,’ you don’t only stretch your body, but you inhale deep breaths and exhale slowly, in order to maximize the feel of the stretch and make these postures easier to perform. It is this breathing part of yoga that is crucial for tinnitus.
Why? Because when you are in these positions and conscious of your breathing, ‘in’ and ‘out,’ you are bringing your mind to the present moment and focused on the here and now. Now do you see where I am getting at ???
I heard about Chakras? what is this and How does it help with yoga and tinnitus?
Ok, chakras are basically spinning vortexes of energy centers situated throughout our body.There are seven main chakras
1.Base or Root Chakra
3. Navel or Solar Plexus Chakra
4. Heart Chakra
6.Brow Chakra-The Third Eye
These are represented by a specific color , specific to certain organs of the body and coincide with a planet.
e.g The sacral chakra
Colour : Orange, Organs: lower abdomen, pelvis, Planet: Moon
So when you do yoga you are actually helping your chakras.How??? Yoga helps to maintain wellness and balance and it does this by removing any blockages in our chakra system or the ” wheels of light.” This allows the radiance to be achieved in the mind, body and soul.
All of the above, together with being in the present moment, distracts your mind from the tinnitus and allows you to feel an inner peace and be calm.
Yoga exercises for tinnitus helps in another way
Yoga is still an exercise routine and like any routine it involves working out the muscles. When you workout your muscles you are increasing blood flow to all parts of the body. With increased blood flow, there is an increase in oxygen supply to the body.
So, our ears are among the recipients to receive this increased supply of oxygen, which GUESS what?? Yeap, you guessed it, is excellent for the tinnitus.
Are YOU starting to see some real and awesome benefits from Yoga?
The different types of yoga
Did you know that there are different types of yoga like Hatha Yoga, Asthtanga Yoga, Bikram yoga , Kundalini Yoga and Iyengar Yoga to name a few.
I think that for now you need not to concern yourself with these types, the important thing is that should you be interested to start, start off with the basics.
If you going to an instructor, he/she will be able to guide you accordingly. If you going to do a home-based program, then I recommend to start off with a basic one.
As I mentioned before , I use the P90X Extreme Home Fitness workout Yoga Program. This yoga is one and half hours in duration and starts you off with stretching for 45minutes and then moves on to balancing for the 20minutes and ends off with some belly exercises and finally a wonderful cool down.
There are some advanced poses here which I skip, and go into ‘child’s pose,’- an easy and simple pose just to relax and breath and just be in the moment.
I try to do the Yoga at least twice a week, and if possible,more often than twice a week. This relaxation exercise is of benefit to me and giving me a control over my tinnitus. When I am at work or in a stressful situation, I STOP! take a step back, take a few deep breaths and calm myself by saying, ” Do NOT let the situation overwhelm you, control your mind, don’t do Harm to yourself.”
Overtime with regular practice, it becomes easy. You will find that you are more in control when there is STORM outside because of the inner peace that is attained on the inside.
I hope you enjoyed my article on yoga and tinnitus and would like to put out an invitation to you to give Yoga a try. Whether its at home or at a gym, try it. You have got absolutely nothing to lose and everything to gain here.
Once you tried it come back here and share with us your story.
Did yoga help you with your tinnitus? If so, in what way do you feel the difference? We would love to hear about your experience. After all, its about helping one another and in this way we are able to help each other and find out what works and what doesn’t.
Thank you for stopping by and I hope to hear from you soon.