Best Activities to Cool the Body This Summer

Sara Picken Brown

Ever wonder why so many yoga retreats are often in locations that are hot? Apart from being a great way to unwind from work and generally far prettier and often with a pool or the ocean nearby, the other key ingredient to a Retreat is often Yoga or some form of physical activity.  The heat is a great way to access mobility and flexibility, sweat being a great way to detox the skin and system of toxins and encourage rehydration. But how can we cool the body with movement when it’s really hot?

 

Here are some of my favourite ‘release the heat yoga poses’ you can try. Make sure you are well hydrated and that you are in a shady place, always go at your own pace listening to your body and if pregnant be mindful of your overall temperature, use a cold compress at the back of the neck if you get too hot or feel nausea at all.

 

*Child’s Pose or Puppy Pose*: are wonderful for calming the nervous system and if you are experiencing heat related headaches, after hydrating,  these can be gently calming for a sore head. 

 

*Camel Pose & Wheel*: Both heart openers and backbends, these can help dial down the stress response and tightness built up from sitting too long and any tension in the body. 

 

*Butterfly Pose* (sitting with soles of feet together, knees open or;

*Reclined Goddess Pose (Supta Baddha Konasana)*  are wonderful for opening the hips and releasing tension in the lower back, if this is your usual ‘hotspot’ for tension.

 

A Yogic Breath technique called sitali meaning “cooling’. You sit comfortably, moisten your tongue then stick your tongue out and roll the edges of your tongue together to make a tube shape. Taking deep inhalations and exhalations for 4-6 counts, repeating 10 -50 times. An additional imagery that I find useful is to imagine yourself sitting by a stream in a cool rainforest. Hear the birds, smell the scent of flowers in the air. Its a wonderful meditation practice and very effective. 

 

Remember no matter what, bodies are gorgeous and unique. If it’s a hot day, we’re all sweaty, so these may move the energy around and shift stagnant moods.




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