Yoga teacher Julia explains how yoga is helpful for asthma

By Adem Lewis / in , , , , , , , , , , , /

I’m Julia White, I’m a yoga teacher and
aromatherapist, and I specialise in teaching yoga to people with asthma. When I was younger, growing up my younger sister had asthma and it was managed, but she used to get quite bad asthma attacks, so either the doctor would be called out
or she’d be hospitalised. And then one day she had an asthma attack. She was at home alone and she had to call the ambulance, the ambulance came and they tried to revive her and they couldn’t. So she died of an asthma attack at the age of 17. At the age of 30 I was then diagnosed with asthma myself. Obviously I went to the doctor, got
diagnosed and was given various inhalers. I managed it that way but then realised
I had to do something about it myself as well as taking my medications, and that’s when I decided to take a hard look at my life and decided
to train to become a yoga teacher. The good thing about yoga is that anyone can do yoga. You know, yoga isn’t just an exercise. The most important part for me
is the breathing. If you can connect with your breath, and move with your breath, then that’s essentially what yoga is. And the other thing at the posture; because when we have an asthma attack, and you hunch and obviously if you are like this it’s
really hard to breathe properly because your chest and your diaphragm are hunched over. So the other thing with yoga is the posture, so it helps open up the chest, which helps to open up the breathing. So if you’ve got asthma and you want to do yoga, the first things you need to do is, one, go to your GP and just make sure your medications are up-to-date. And then the other thing you need to do is wherever you
do yoga, whether it’s at home or whether you’re going to the studio or class, just make sure you have your blue reliever inhaler right next to you
on the yoga mat. And then lastly you just need to make sure that your written asthma action plan is up-to-date as well. Five to 10 minutes a day, it’s your space to
become calm, to become relaxed, to practise some breathing, practise a few postures… And just those five to 10 minutes a day are going to make such a big difference to how you manage your asthma and to your daily life.

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