Calf muscles play a vital role in the functioning of the body. In yogic practice, these muscles are akin to the heart, almost like a second heart. This is because there exists a close relationship between this muscle group and our cardiovascular health.
"A high profile politician was suffering from hypertension, I noticed he had stiff calf muscles. Those with acute stress also tend to have stiffness in their calves. Muscle exercises targeting the calves can go a long way in providing relief," says Yogi Anoop.
Under Yogi Anoop’s guidance, you can learn exercises and asanas that can help relieve stiffness in calf muscles and go on to tackling a range of health issues.
Yoga for stiff calf muscles
This is one of the best de-stressing asanas and extremely beneficial for heart health as well as for those suffering from high blood pressure. It gives a strenuous stress on the calf muscles and is good to get the blood flow gushing through and for rectifying poor circulation.
Stand straight with your legs joined together. Interlock your fingers and stretch your arms above your head. Now, gradually raise heels and stand on your toes while stretching up and down. Make sure your heels do not touch the ground. Practise 4 to 5 sets of 20 repetitions each.
Stretch out while breathing-in and come down while exhaling. Experience the stretch in your calves.
The asana is good for high blood pressure, stress and heart ailments. Practising it increases the blood flow to the spinal region and activates the navel area. It also aids digestion, keeping problems like constipation and gastric issues in check besides promoting blood circulation.
After a month of practising this asana, you can try performing it on one leg, doing it in an alternate manner with the support of a wall.
This posture is excellent for the health of calf muscles. It brings the brain and the heart in a restful state. While performing this exercise, a lot of strain and pressure is loaded on to the calf muscles.
Sit in siddhasana and stretch out one leg in front. Now bend forward and hold the feet from both hands, pulling the feet inside. Make sure you do not bend the spine too much. Feel the strain on your calves and behind the knee. Hold the posture for a few seconds and release. Repeat on the other leg.
Breathe out while bending forward and inhale when in normal position.
Avoid practising this posture if you suffer from a slipped disc or any other spinal injury.
This posture is an extension to the traditional triangle pose. Here, you bend sideways and touch the ground while your other arm is stretched out towards the sky. This gives a nice, deep stretch to the calves and is great for losing weight around the stomach region and on the sides.
Stand erect in tadasana, maintain at least two feet-gap between both legs. Turn sideways and bend so that you touch the ground, if possible. Make sure you do not bend the spine a lot. Feel the pressure on the calves. Repeat on the other side.
Lie on the back and relax the body while keeping your eyes closed. Start with one leg, flex your calf, hold for a few seconds and release. Repeat on the other leg. Practising this for 5 minutes will not only relax the calf muscles but will also benefit those with hypertension and can alleviate headaches.
Copyright - by Yogi Anoop