4 Yoga Moves that Can Help Get Rid of a Hangover

yoga mat

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We’ve all been there: that nasty hangover that leaves you worthless on the couch for the entire next day, sipping water, swearing off drinking, and eating your weight in cheese. When you’re feeling horrible, the last thing you may want to do is roll out your yoga mat, but it turns out yoga may be exactly what you need. When you drink too much, your digestion may be out of balance, you may have a roaring headache, and trouble focusing. Yoga speeds along the recovery process by releasing toxins, improving circulation, aiding the digestion process, and relieving tension. When combined with plenty of water, yoga may turn out to be your hangover’s worst enemy.

So, pull yourself off the couch, take a deep breath, and allow your body to reap the benefits of these easy, low energy yoga poses. If you don’t have a yoga mat, lay a comfortable blanket on the floor and don’t forget your favorite pillow and any other props you think you’ll need to relax.

1. Child’s pose (Balasana)

child's pose

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This pose is perfect if you feel like having your eyes open is a chore. Simply come onto your hands and knees and let your hips drop back until your butt is resting on your heels. Play around with how wide your knees are as you may feel more comfortable with your knees wide apart. Rest your aching head on your hands or grab a pillow or blanket. This pose gently compresses your abdomen to aid in the removal of metabolic waste and improve the circulation of your lymph.

2. Standing forward bend (Ardha Uttanasana)

forward bend yoga

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If you’re prone to muscle aches after a crazy night of drinking, this pose may quickly become your new best friend. Come to standing and bend at the waist until your head releases toward the floor. You can let your arms fall toward the ground or bend your arms and hold both elbows with the opposite hands. This pose stretches your hamstrings, calms the mind (goodbye hangover anxiety), and induces restful sleep, which is always useful after a late night. Additionally, if you have any head congestion, being upside down can help relieve it.

3. Seated twist (Ardha Matsyendrasana)

young man exercising on mat

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You can try to flush toxins out of your body with water, but a seated spinal twist may be what you’re missing to speed along the process. Start sitting on the floor with your legs straight in front of you. Bend your right knee brining the foot flat on the floor next to your left knee. Sitting up tall twist your upper body to the right until your left elbow comes on the inside of your bent right leg. Look behind you and focus on twisting to the right while keeping your back straight. Repeat on the other side. This pose stretches and energizes the spine while cleaning your internal organs and stimulating your digestion. Not only will your liver, kidney, and lungs thank you, but you can use this pose to relieve backache and fatigue.

4. Boat pose (Navasana)

yoga, boat pose

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If you’re experiencing an extra bad hangover, this may be one pose you hold off on trying until later in the day. Navasana is an abdominal strengthening pose, which alleviates those not so lovable hangover symptoms of cramping, bloating, and gas. Sit on the floor with your legs straight out in front of you. Take both hands and grab the back of your thighs right above your knee. Tilt your weight back and lift your legs off the ground so you are balancing on your tailbone. The key is to ensure your back is straight and to find the balancing sweet spot. You can keep your hands behind your knees ensuring your shins are parallel to the floor or take it up a notch by straitening your legs and releasing your arms to either side of your body keeping them parallel to the floor.

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