Yoga and the Detox

English: Kurmasana or The Tortoise Hatha Yoga ...

This person is bendy!

When I was thinking about the things I wanted to do to ‘get moving’ this month, I’ll admit…yoga was not the first thing that popped into my mind. I was reading “The Detox Solution” and as part of the chapter on boosting detox through enhancing circulation, Dr. Patricia Fitzgerald mentions yoga. According to her research, yoga does in fact support detox because,

as you twist, bend, and stretch, your internal organs and spine are gently massaged. Thus cleansing and repair processes are stimulated.”

Although I’m only starting my yoga journey with some gentle moves, my cousin (the yoga expert!), tells me there are many poses aimed at detox specifically. Once I have mastered my morning and evening routine, perhaps they are something I’ll look into.

For those of us (myself included) who have a bit of a mysterious veil between us and yoga, here’s a list of types of yoga with a brief description of each. If you’ve ever watched friends, you’ll notice that all the titles begin with, “The One with..” or “The One where…”. Using this simple and ‘friendly’ technique, I’m going to give you the rundown.

Hatha – The One with the stretching, strengthening and balance that is the most popular in Western culture.

Sivananda – The One with the spiritual and gentle take.

Kundalini – The One with all the chanting and spiritual energy.

Bikram – The One with all the sweat and hot rooms.

Iyengar – The One where you hold it for a looonnnnggggg time.

Ashtanga – The One that is super quick and intense.

Restorative – The One that is explained by its name…or The One that is relaxed and rejuvinating.

Power Yoga – The One that’s a Western take on Ashtanga.

Hopefully my simplification hasn’t offended any hard core, yoga goers. If you’d like more information, or to see even more types of yoga, you can visit .

I think the poses that I have set out for my mornings are Hatha and nights are Restorative, but I’ll have to check with Tamara on that one. They teach both of those as well as Ashtanga and Power at the Yoga Station, so it could be both!

If you are considering doing some Yoga, maybe you’ve bought a DVD or are watching me clumsily make it through a routine, I encourage you to try a few classes with an instructor. When you do poses differently than they are supposed to be done, you run the risk of injuring yourself. Even you take a class or two, just to find out if you are doing the poses right, you’ll benefit. I know that I will be checking in with Tamara every so often…just to make sure I haven’t fallen into bad habits! Check out my quick talk about Yoga at Home with Tamara before you start the yoga routines she’s helped me set out.

PS – We’ve been having some technical difficulties, but I PROMISE, the night yoga routine will be up soon!

What has your experience with yoga been? Have you had lots, none, good or bad?


About msjenniferwalker

I'm a Jenn of all trades, as long as they are creative and fulfilling. I'm an actress, writer, photographer and all around social person. I love to learn, travel, meet new people and have new experiences.

Posted on February 3, 2012, in Experiences, Information and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 11 Comments.

  1. Hey! I just started this new program (ok, I bought running shoes so far), and I thought you might be interested. Its supposed to take you from being a couch potatoe to being able to run 5km in 9 weeks (longer if needed). Check out their site. It sounds completely do-able, and it gets you moving! 🙂 Good Luck.

    • Looks interesting, but jogging is not for me. I have bad knees and the worst thing you can do is jog for those. Especially since the calories burned to wear/tear ratio is not that great. Walking I can do! Thanks for the info and let me know if you do it for you. I’d be interested to see how you did 🙂

  2. I love that you have addressed the different types of yoga. Not all styles are sutied to each person. I used to HATE yoga. Now I love it. And I chalk it up to the different style and practices and didn’t find that kind that suited me until now. It was never a flexability issues (as you well know). But Through my crossfit gym we have a wonderful yoga practioner who works out with us and then teaches us yoga on saturdays. I have never been more in love with yoga until I met her and her style of practice.

    Also the hard thing i find about video is depth of knowledge. For example. I may be a novice “yoga” practioner – but am naturally incredi flexible. When I bought dvds or followed along with videos. even doing the ‘advanced’ poses never seemed to do anything for me. Because – and i assume- that general dvds are for the mass audience who doesn’t have my flexability.

    I highly recommend at least seeing an instructor once. Mine _ Jane. has been wonderful at showing me throughout the practice different positions from the rest of the class to help my own body benefit from it since i’m at a different level of flexability and stability. Which to me is very important. Cause I know I became frustrated with the videos from feeling like I wasn’t really “getting anything from them” so I just wanted to share that experience with others.

    1. important to try the different styles. cause that can make a difference.
    2. at least trying the style of your choice with an instructor so they can assess your level and suggest appropriate movements.

    and obviousy once you find those moves no longer feeling effective you can always visit an instructor once again to learn how to progress.

    it has been a wonderful experience for me. and yes very detoxing. I also try to do an Am/PM yoga practice daily for simple destressing.

    Yoga magazines are also great reads as they detail yoga practices based on certain ailments yo want to treat (much like your cousin saying there are certain poses for detoxing specifically) Knowledge is power! Keep on going!

  3. I didn’t know there was so many different kinds, great information Jenn!

  4. Curious about the science behind the claims

    I am new to yoga and am enjoying it quite a bit but am still curious about the whole concept of toxin elimination. I can appreciate how yoga stretches and twists would cause toxins to be loosened up from where they may have been stagnant, but is there any actual science to prove that the body then eliminates them? Or, do they instead just settle somewhere else? I have surfed the web and seen lots of claims which mostly seem like marketing. I’d really like to see some evidence based on good studies that have been replicated by others. Have you come across any in your pursuit of yoga and detox?

    • Most of my information for the yoga and detox aspect comes from “The Detox Solution” by Fitzgerald. She basically says that yoga stimulates all the organs to begin their natural processes of detoxification (as you mentioned). She also says that the movements combined with the controlled breathing brings oxygen into needed areas of your body which help you detox. Your body is designed to eliminate toxins, through circulation and your lymphatic system, but often our sedentary lifestyle stops this from happening. As I understand it, the reason it is important to do yoga as opposed to just any exercise, is the mindfulness of it. You are paying attention to proper postures and your spine is connected to processes all over your body. You are often in almost a meditative state. Then sometimes, you do Bikram yoga, which is just a big sweat fest that releases all those toxins out of your skin. I hope that helps you a little bit more in your understanding of it. I haven’t really focused on finding studies specific to it. I personally would say the ‘actual science’ you are looking for is the natural processes of your body, you are just stimulating them with yoga in specific. If you happen to find any studies in your search, please link them here. I’d love to read them. 🙂

  5. I’m about to take a month off work and do power yoga twice a day.

  1. Pingback: The many benefits of Yoga | The UnOfficial Version

  2. Pingback: The many benefits of Yoga « Short stories from life

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