The Yoga Poses That Helped Me Get To The Root Of My Adult Acne
When I was in my 20s, I found I was struggling with something I had hoped would end with my awkward teenage years: acne. The longer my acne lingered, the more hopeless and resigned to it I felt—until a friend suggested that yoga could help me relieve stress, a known contributor to acne. I was skeptical: Could spending a few hours a week stretching on a mat really do anything to help clear up my skin?
While my acne didn't vanish at the first downward-facing dog, over time it did start to ease up a bit. Here are some of the specific poses that I suspect helped my complexion by getting to the underlying causes of acne.
For digestion: triangle and wind-relieving pose.
Yoga turned me on to a vegetarian diet and taught me to eat more consciously. It also made me crave less refined sugar, which can accelerate the signs of acne and aging. I felt like poses such as triangle, wind-relieving pose, staff pose, and revolved lunge all helped rev up my digestion too.
For sleep: triangle and savasana.
A steady yoga routine helped me de-stress, which meant I could fall asleep faster and have more energy throughout the day. I found poses like standing forward fold, triangle, shoulder stand, plow pose, headstand, and, of course, savasana, to be especially relaxing.
For emotional support: seated forward bend and cobra pose.
Emotions have quite a bit of power over our body's health, and negative, fearful emotions can throw our hormones out of whack. When looking to balance my emotions, I utilized tree pose, warrior 1 pose, seated forward bend, cobra pose, and child's pose. Simply sitting and breathing was also amazing for my mood.
For stress relief: upward-facing dog and seated twist.
Stress is one of the factors that triggers acne, and I had a lot of it. I found that sneaking in a quick asana during the workday helped lower my stress levels in the moment. At the office I did seated crescent moon pose, extended mountain pose, upward-facing dog, extended side angle, forward fold, and seated twist. Sure, I got a few weird looks, but it was worth it.
When I wasn't at work, I practiced other stress-busting poses like reclining bound angle pose, legs up the wall, and savasana.
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