Yoga for Asthma

Francesca Silva

Asthma InhalerI have asthma – have had it ever since I was young. While most people take breathing for granted, those of us who have asthma know exactly how it feels to struggle for breath while trying hard not to panic.

Most of the time, I have my asthma under control and can pretty much anticipate what’s going to set it off – usually the change in weather. Perhaps living in a country where we can have rain, snow and sunshine all in one day is not ideal for asthmatics, but I wouldn’t choose to live anywhere else.

Over the years, as I’ve become more savvy about my health, I’ve come to realize that I don’t want to rely on my puffers for the rest of my life. Injecting that horrible stuff into my mouth three times a day (on a bad day) must have some disturbing side effects.

Well, that said, recently I realized that my breathing has started to improve and I’ve been relying less and less on my puffers. After so many years of struggling for breath, something’s changed in me. I can now breathe easier and fuller. How come?


Ever since I started practicing yoga, I’ve been learning how to breathe. Don’t laugh – of course everyone knows how to breathe. But not everyone knows how to breathe correctly.

It’s amazing how yoga can teach everyone – not only asthmatics – how to breathe properly. For example, Pranayama – or yoga breathing – is a yoga discipline that focuses on breath control. Exercises include the Dirga Pranayama – or “three-part breath” – which is an excellent technique for beginners and experts alike as it focuses the attention on calming and grounding the mind.

I’ve just found out that May is Asthma Awareness Month. This year, May 5 has been designated World Asthma Day with its theme being “You can control your asthma. If you want to find out more about this and perhaps participate in some of the events, check out GINA, the Global Initiative For Asthma and click on “World Asthma Day”.

If you have asthma (or know anyone who does), why not try yoga as a form of alleviating your breathing problems. I’m confident that you – like me – will find the results truly breathtaking!

[tags] asthma, asthmatics, yoga breathing, Ashtma Awareness Month, learning to breathe, Pranayama, Dirga Pranayama [/tags]

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