One thing I have noticed recently, is that my husband Tom, doesn’t seem to snore anymore, compared to in the past. This got me to thinking……is it due to what I’ve been thinking? So, I started some searching, and found some evidence, that I can link back to the effects of yoga. Tom has been practicing yoga regularly for 4 years. When Tom started yoga, like all of us, his posture needed worked on. Like mine, his shoulders rounded forward a bit, collapsing his upper chest inwards. Because the shoulders were forward; it threw his head forward. Like any posture, as we age, it starts to “stick” where it is most of the time. Tom sleeps on his back, so even in sleep the head was forward of the spine.
Through yoga practice, Tom began to slowly straighten his posture. When his head was more aligned with the spine, there was additional room at the back of the throat, so when he opened his mouth to breath during sleep, there was no obstruction to make any noise. Also a huge benefit of a regular yoga practice is simply moving with breath. If you are clogged up, you are not breathing well. Being mindful about breathing in yoga, and even practicing ujjayi breathing (a breath with an ocean like sound) during yoga has profound effects on the body. Some of the benefits of ujjayi breathing is diminished pain from headaches, relief of sinus pressure, decrease in phlegm, and strengthening of the nervous and digestive systems.
Another problem besides keeping your spouse awake at night with regards to snoring, is that 75% of people who snore have obstructive sleep apnea
(when breathing is disrupted during sleep
for short periods), which increases the risk of developing heart disease
, Slaughter says. Here is another added benefit of yoga practice that I mention. When your chest is somewhat collapsed, it puts additional stress on the heart to pump. Practicing back bends, forward bends in yoga eliminates the chest from collapsing. The intercostal muscles between the ribs are opened, and you can breath better.
Yoga works like water rushing on a stone. Eventually, it will shape and change the stone. You have to practice it, regularly, over a long time to notice the benefits. Snoring is problematic, a nuisance really, but heart disease is serious. Little problems untreated become bigger problems. I for one, am happy that Tom started a yoga practice, because I can sleep better at night. Besides, I love that guy, and want him to stick around for a long time.
PS: February is a great month to bring your spouse to Anahata. With reduced drop in rates for members of $5, 7 and 10.00 for a drop in fee, and as little as $15 extra a month to add him/her to your membership, you owe it to your special someone to practice together. Also, check out our Valentines hot couple workshop on the 14th,
with great Thai yoga massage, and partner yoga.
See you love birds on your mat,