Yoga Therapy Series
Free Downloadable Yoga For Asthma Lesson Plan
This Asthma yoga lesson plan was created by George Watts using the Drag & Drop Yoga Genie Planner.
The long version has everything you need to practice the lesson plan before getting to class. You can take it to class with you (but you may prefer to take the short version). The long version is a great handout to give to your students, especially your one-to-one students. It immediately shows your professionalism and increases your expertise in the eyes of the student(s).
The short version is perfect for taking into class with you. It’s short and sweet.
Mountain (Tadasana) is a lovely pose to ease asthma because it’s a gentle chest opener, and is calming. Having good posture (chest open) is extremely important if you have asthma.
Video Of George Talking About The Yoga For Asthma Lesson Plan
Q & A
Below are common questions people with Asthma may ask you before joining your yoga class, and possible responses…
“What are the main benefits of yoga for asthma?”
- Yoga reduces stress (especially slow paced yoga)
- Significant improvement in lung function
- Reduction in asthma symptoms
“Can yoga breathing exercises help asthma?”
The key with breathing if you have asthma is to breath less. You want shorter inhales and longer exhales. One of the most popular breathing exercises for asthmatics is the Buteyko Method.
Buteyko Breathing Method
- Sit upright in a comfortable chair and relax.
- Close eyes and tilt your head slightly up.
- Gently, shallowly, and slowly breathe through your nose while keeping your mouth closed.
- Exhale slowly and fully until you feel your lungs have been emptied of air.
The Buteyko Breathing Method can be used when you are having an asthma attack. Since asthma causes air to become trapped in your lungs, this may help you get more air out and may make breathing easier.
Breath Holds Method
- Take a small inhale
- Exhale through nose (pinch nose with fingers and thumb)
- Hold breath for 3 to 5 seconds
- Resume normal breathing for 10 seconds
- Repeat until symptoms pass
“Can Yoga cure asthma?”
Asthma is a long-term disease that has no cure. The goal of yoga for asthma is to control the disease. Yoga can help ease chronic and troublesome symptoms such as attacks, coughing and shortness of breath.
“Can I practice yoga if I have severe asthma?”
For many asthma sufferers, physical exertion and vigorous exercise can trigger asthma symptoms. But lack of exercise is not good for anyone. If you have severe asthma you can practice gentle yoga (slow movements or yin).
“Can Yoga cause exercise induced asthma?”
If you have severe asthma and practice advanced vinyasa yoga such as Ashtanga yoga, you have a higher chance of experiencing exercised-induced asthma. Exercised-induced asthma is a narrowing of the airways in the lungs that is triggered by strenuous exercise. It causes shortness of breath, wheezing, coughing and other symptoms during or after exercise. If you have moderate to severe asthma, it’s best to practice a more gentle form of yoga.
“How long should I practice yoga for?”
That depends on what type of asthma you have (intermittent, mild, moderate or severe). A daily 15 minute yoga practice will reduce your chances of an asthma attack. And if you feel OK after 15 minutes, you can gradually add more minutes to your practice.
“Is meditation good if I have asthma?”
Yes. A few minutes spent meditating will help calm your mind.
“What are the best yoga poses for asthma?”
A gentle yoga practice with slow movements that help open your chest (which helps breathing) such as: abdominal breathing, bow pose, camel pose, corpse (savasana), crocodile pose, downward facing dog pose, fish pose, headstand, lotus pose, mountain pose, sphinx, and shoulderstand.