Twists for Digestion


side crowFriday morning hits and you can barely move. The Thanksgiving feast has given you the desire to detox. Well, twists might be a nourishing way to aid in digestion. It is important to twist to the right first because it widens the ascending colon, which gets stool moving up and across the transverse colon. The left twist to follow moves the stool down the descending colon, into the sigmoid colon and out for elimination.

According to Yoga International, “as you twist, your abdomen is naturally compressed. This squeezing of the abdomen increases blood circulation and stimulates all the organs and nerve plexuses involved in digestion and elimination, restoring and renewing their vitality.” Many diseases begin in the organs that are involved in digestion and elimination. When they are working optimally, the body can maintain health.

Before coming into side crow, prepare the body with some seated spinal twists, twisting lunges, and chair twists. This will work on the twisting aspect. In addition, add some arm strengthening poses such as downward facing dog, plank or kneeling plank, and crow.

Start in a chair pose. Start to squat down toward the earth as you twist your left elbow to the outside of the right knee. Place your hands on the ground, shoulder distance apart. Bring your elbows over your wrists. Spread your hands so wide that you can’t even lift your fingers off the mat if you tried. Place your upper right thigh on the back of the left tricep. The right tricep can support the right hip. Slowly shift your weight forward into your hands. Look forward. If you look down, that’s where you’re headed.

Lift your right leg and left leg off the earth. Once here, breathe for three to five breaths. You can lift your right hip off your right tricep. You can also extend your left leg out. To come out of this, bring your left leg back in and slowly lower your feet to the floor. Unwind and come into a forward fold. If you feel like hopping back into your chaturanga, you can do that as well. Repeat on the other side.

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