Lockdown from three months have restricted our movement by constraining us within the walls of home and by putting a pause on our usual routine. Work from home has led to problems like headaches due to constant screen time, and joint pains due to lack of muscle movement. It has also blurred the line between personal time and work time adding a burnout feeling at the end of the day. The meals are either skipped or there is an overeating due to stress leading to weight gain. Further, our socialising has been paused, we are now craving for social outings with loved ones which we used to look forward for over the weekends.
In short, these changes have taken a toll on our mental health further bringing down our immunity- which needs to be strong in the times of pandemic.
Apart from eating healthy, engaging into hobbies, one way to build up on immunity as well as mental health is to stay active through at least one hour of exercise and get the muscles moving. One such form of exercise feasible at home and doesn’t require hi tech equipment like in gym is YOGA.
Yogaasanas and pranayama are best forms of exercise to build on immunity, flexibility, enhance body functions and mind-body connection. Also, Yoga in combination with therapy and/or psychiatric medication helps in many mental health issues which are on rise during this lockdown. Lockdown is making us worried, edgy and restless due to its uncertainty. Regular yoga practice can help to stay calm and relaxed giving peaceful sleep, and can give you the strength to face uncertainty without getting edgy. Focusing your attention to breathe can help to free the mind of the needless clutter of thoughts that breeds anxiety. Regular meditation can help to reduce stress by relaxing the tense muscles in body, bring the heart rate to normal and reduce perspiration. Yoga helps to release chemicals like endorphins which in turn improves mood especially in depression. It helps to enhance attention span and focus among the Attention deficit and hyperactive children as well as increase tolerance level.
Yoga practice of 1 hour can bring peace, restoring a sense of mental wellbeing which is a dire need of the hour.
- By Ajeeta Mulye, Psychologist & Outreach Associate, Mpower – The Foundation.