Today is the second day that my husband Daniel has been feeling unwell. There are few ailments more frightening than a “man cold/cough”. Sadly, he is suffering more today than he was yesterday, so I racked my brain and my intuition for what I might pull out of my yoga tool box for him.

Here’s a simple, nurturing practice I created for the kind of cough that makes your chest hurt. The program is also good for cases of mild asthma.

1. Supta Baddha Konasana – Forehead higher than chin, chin higher than chest, chest open. Fosters relaxation and breathing.

Supta Baddha Konasana

Supta Baddha Konasana

2. Supported Parigrasana – Side Stretch. Releases tension in the side diaphragm and lungs and increases lung capacity.

Parigrasana - Supported Side Stretch

Supported Parigrasana – Side Stretch

3. Chest Opening on Backbender – These benches should be standard issue in every yoga space! Gives the upper thoracic a stretch and opening.

Back bend on Bench

Back bend on Bench

4. Supta Virasana – A lift and opening for the chest and a stretch for the digestive organs.

Supta Virasana

Supta Virasana

5. Viparita Karani Cycle – Legs-up-the-wall. A chest opener, inversion and it’s soothing for the kidneys. Splits and baddha konasana complete the cycle.

Viparita Karana Legs-up-the-wall

Viparita Karana
Legs-up-the-wall

Splits in Viparita Karani

Baddha Konasana in Viparita Karani

6. Ardha Jatara Parivartanasana on Bolster – A floor twist to release the back.

Ardha Jatara on Bolster

Ardha Jatara on Bolster