Yoga for When You're Sick

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Yoga for when you’re sick! Here are some poses you can still do!

Yoga for when you are sick is a gentle and therapeutic approach to support your body and mind during times of illness. This practice aims to provide relief from symptoms, boost your immune system, and promote overall well-being. 

By incorporating restorative poses, deep breathing exercises, and mindful meditation, yoga can help reduce stress, increase circulation, and enhance your body’s natural healing abilities. Join us as we explore yoga as a healing tool to aid recovery and restore balance.

Yoga for when you’re sick

When you’re feeling under the weather, the last thing you may feel like doing is breaking a sweat or pushing your body to its limits. However, did you know that certain yoga poses for when you’re sick and which can actually provide relief, support your healing process, and promote a sense of well-being? That’s right! Yoga can be a gentle and effective practice to engage in when you’re sick. It allows you to tap into your body’s innate wisdom, promoting relaxation, deep breathing, and gentle movement. So, put on your comfiest yoga pants and get ready to explore some soothing yoga poses that can help you navigate through those sick days with ease.

It’s important to remember that when practicing yoga while sick, it’s crucial to honor your body’s needs and be sure of how you feel after practicing yoga . The intention is to create a nurturing and healing environment, rather than to challenge your physical abilities. Always listen to your body’s signals, modify poses as needed, and take breaks when necessary.

So, the next time you find yourself reaching for the tissues and feeling under the weather, consider rolling out your yoga mat instead of surrendering to the couch.

8 Yoga poses for when you’re getting sick

Practicing yoga while you’re sick can help promote relaxation, ease discomfort, and support your body’s healing process. Here are some yoga poses, along with their benefits and techniques, that you can consider when you’re feeling under the weather:

Yoga posesTechniqueBenefits
Child’s Pose (Balasana)Start on your hands and knees, then sit back on your heels while lowering your forehead to the mat. Keep your arms extended or relax them alongside your body. Breathe deeply and hold the pose for several breaths or longer.Calms the mind, relieves stress, gently stretches the lower back and hips.
Supported Bridge Pose (SetuBandha Sarvangasana)Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the mat. Lift your hips off the mat and slide a block or bolster underneath your sacrum. Rest your hips on the prop and relax your arms alongside your body. Stay in the pose for a few minutes, focusing on deep breaths.Opens the chest, relieves congestion, supports gentle stretching of the spine and hips.
Legs-Up-The-Wall Pose (Viparita Karani)Sit sideways next to a wall and swing your legs up onto the wall as you lie back on the mat. Adjust your distance from the wall to a comfortable position. Keep your arms relaxed, either stretched out to the sides or placed on your belly. Close your eyes, breathe deeply, and hold the pose for several minutes.Improves circulation, soothes the nervous system, relieves fatigue.
Reclining Bound Angle Pose(SuptaBaddha Konasana)Lie on your back and bring the soles of your feet together, allowing your knees to open to the sides. Support your knees with blocks or folded blankets if needed. Rest your arms comfortably alongside your body, close your eyes, and take slow, deep breaths. Stay in the pose for a few minutes.Opens the hips and groin, relieves tension in the lower body, and encourages relaxation.
Seated Spinal Twist (Ardha Matsyendrasana)Sit with your legs extended in front of you, then bend your right knee and place your right foot outside your left thigh. Place your left hand on your right knee and gently twist your torso to the right, looking over your right shoulder. Take deep breaths and hold the twist for several breaths. Repeat on the other side.Stimulates digestion, improves spinal mobility, releases tension in the back.
Supine Twist (Supta Matsyendrasana)Lie on your back with your arms extended to the sides. Bend your knees and draw them toward your chest. Slowly lower your knees to the right side while keeping your shoulders grounded. Turn your head to the left and relax into the twist. Breathe deeply and hold the pose for several breaths. Repeat on the other side.Relieves tension in the spine, massages internal organs, and promotes relaxation.
Supported Fish Pose (Matsyasana)Place a bolster or folded blanket horizontally on your mat. Sit on the bolster and carefully lower your back onto it, allowing your head to rest gently on the mat. Extend your legs or keep them bent with the soles of your feet on the mat. Relax your arms alongside your body and breathe deeply. Hold the pose for a few minutes.Opens the chest, improves breathing capacity, relieves congestion.
Supported Puppy Pose (Uttana Shishosana)Begin on all fours with your knees directly under your hips and your hands slightly forward. Walk your hands forward while keeping your hips above your knees. Lower your chest and forehead toward the mat, resting them on a bolster or folded blankets. Relax your arms and take slow, deep breaths. Hold the pose for a few minutes.Stretches the spine and shoulders, promotes relaxation, opens the chest.

Remember, when practicing yoga while sick, it’s crucial to listen to your body’s needs and not push yourself too hard. Stay hydrated, take breaks when necessary, and modify poses as needed to suit your comfort level.

Is it okay to practice yoga when sick?

When illness strikes, our instinct may be to crawl into bed and rest. But what if there was a gentle and soothing practice that could aid in your recovery and provide comfort when you’re sick? Contrary to popular belief, yoga can be a beneficial and supportive practice during times of illness. 

To avoid infecting your fellow yogis, it is advisable to avoid the yoga studio if you are feeling under the weather. Instead, exercise at home. If you are coughing and sneezing, this is crucial! Do not perform asana if you are extremely ill; instead, concentrate on getting rest. It’s especially crucial to pay attention to your body’s needs while you’re unwell; sometimes, resting is the most yogic course of action.

8 Tips on how to practice yoga when sick

When practicing yoga while you’re sick, it’s important to prioritize gentle movements, deep breathing, and relaxation. Here are some points to consider when practicing yoga during illness:

  1. Listen to Your Body: Pay attention to how you’re feeling and honor your body’s needs. Respect any limitations or discomfort you may have, and modify poses accordingly. Remember that rest is just as important as movement when you’re sick.
  2. Choose Restorative Poses: Focus on gentle, restorative poses that promote relaxation and healing. Poses such as Child’s Pose (Balasana), Supported Bridge Pose (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana), and Legs-Up-The-Wall Pose (Viparita Karani) can be soothing and help alleviate symptoms.
  3. Practice Gentle Twists: Incorporate gentle twists to stimulate digestion and release tension in the spine. Seated Spinal Twist (Ardha Matsyendrasana) and Supine Twist (Supta Matsyendrasana) are beneficial options. Move slowly and mindfully, avoiding any strain or discomfort.
  4. Use Supportive Props: Bolsters, blankets, or pillows can provide support and comfort during your practice. They can help elevate your hips, support your back, or cushion sensitive areas. Utilize props to create a nurturing environment for your practice.
  5. Focus on Deep Breathing: Practice deep belly breathing (diaphragmatic breathing) to promote relaxation and activate the parasympathetic nervous system. Breathe deeply into your abdomen, allowing the breath to be slow, smooth, and calming. This can help reduce stress and enhance your body’s healing response.
  6. Engage in Meditation and Visualization: Incorporate meditation and visualization techniques to calm the mind and promote a sense of well-being. Find a comfortable seated position or lie down, close your eyes, and focus on your breath or visualize healing energy flowing through your body.
  7. Hydrate and Rest Afterwards: After your practice, drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated and support your body’s healing process. Allow yourself ample time to rest and restore, giving your body the opportunity to recover.
  8. Consult a Healthcare Professional: If you have a serious illness or are unsure about practicing yoga while sick, it’s essential to consult a healthcare professional. They can provide guidance tailored to your specific condition and advise on the best approach for your recovery.

When are you too sick to practice yoga?

Yoga can be a powerful tool for maintaining overall well-being, but when sickness strikes, it’s crucial to know when to flow and when to let your body heal. Here’s a concise comparison of what can be done and what is best to hit pause on your practice.

ConditionWhat To DoWhat To Avoid 
Mild Cold/FluLight stretching and gentle yoga posesIntense or vigorous yoga practice
FeverRest and avoid physical activityAvoid yoga as it can raise body temperature
RespiratorySlow-paced, deep-breathing exercisesStrenuous or inverted poses that may worsen symptoms
Stomach IssuesGentle stretching, twisting, and breathing exercisesIntense abdominal exercises or poses that compress the gut
FatigueRestorative yoga, gentle stretches, and relaxationEnergetic or demanding sequences
InfectionsConsult a healthcare professionalAvoid yoga until you recover and get medical clearance


What is the best Yoga for going to bed when you are sick?

Restorative yoga, gentle stretches, and deep breathing exercises are ideal for bedtime when you’re sick. These practices promote relaxation, improve sleep quality, and support your body’s healing process.

Can I do yoga when I have a fever?

 It’s generally recommended to avoid yoga when you have a fever. Rest and allow your body to recover instead.

Can yoga help with a cold? 

Yes, gentle yoga poses and stretching can help relieve symptoms of a cold, such as congestion and stiffness.

Are there specific poses for respiratory issues? 

Deep-breathing exercises, gentle chest openers, and poses that promote expansion of the lungs, like seated forward folds, can be beneficial.

Should I avoid inversions when I’m sick?

 Inversions, such as headstands or shoulder stands, can worsen congestion or respiratory symptoms. It’s best to avoid them during illness.

Can yoga boost my immune system when I’m sick? 

Yoga’s stress-reducing effects can indirectly support immune function, but it won’t directly cure or prevent illness.

Can yoga worsen stomach issues like indigestion? 

Intense abdominal poses may aggravate stomach issues. Gentle stretches, twists, and breathing exercises are more suitable in such cases.

Can yoga relieve body aches during illness? 

Mild stretching and gentle movement can help alleviate body aches and promote circulation, but avoid intense or demanding sequences.

Can yoga help with fatigue when I’m sick? 

Restorative yoga, gentle stretches, and relaxation techniques can help manage fatigue and promote overall well-being.

Is it safe to do yoga when I have an infection? 

It’s best to consult with a healthcare professional if you have an infection. They can provide guidance based on your specific condition.

Should I continue my regular yoga practice when sick? 

Listen to your body. If you feel too fatigued or unwell, it’s important to prioritize rest and recovery over your regular yoga routine.

Can yoga help with sinus congestion? 

Certain yoga practices, like gentle twists and inversions that promote drainage, can provide relief from sinus congestion.

Can yoga help with a sore throat?

Yoga cannot directly cure a sore throat, but deep breathing exercises and gentle stretching can help alleviate tension and promote relaxation.

Can yoga help with coughing? 

Gentle breathing exercises, such as alternate nostril breathing, can help calm coughing and promote respiratory health.

Should I avoid hot yoga when I’m sick?

Hot yoga can be physically demanding and raise body temperature, making it advisable to avoid when you’re sick.

When can I resume my regular yoga practice after being sick? 

Once you’ve fully recovered and received medical clearance, gradually ease back into your regular yoga practice to avoid overexertion.

Can yoga be practiced if one is suffering from covid?

Yes, yoga can be practiced during COVID-19. However, it is important to follow guidelines provided by health authorities, such as maintaining social distance, practicing in well-ventilated areas, and avoiding crowded yoga classes. Online yoga classes are also a popular option during this time.


When sickness knocks you down, let yoga be your gentle guide to healing. From soothing stretches to calming breaths, it offers solace in times of discomfort. Embrace restorative poses, honor your body’s limits, and embrace the power of self-care. 

Let yoga be your sanctuary, bringing balance and peace to your journey towards wellness. Together, sickness and yoga can teach us the art of resilience and self-compassion.