Every day haircare products fly off the shelves, winging into our bathrooms on the promise of strong, shining locks. In spite of this, hair problems are a fact of life, ranging from the odd “bad hair day” to hair loss and dandruff. Can yoga offer a way out? Balayam yoga (“bal” = hair, “vyayam” = exercise) or prasanna mudra is a specific exercise that yoga practitioners recommend for hair problems – and perhaps in its sheer simplicity lies its attraction.
Hair Health: Yoga Can Help By Stimulating Blood Flow To Scalp
Balayam and other yoga practices do not offer a direct cure for hair problems. Neither can they reverse genetic hair loss. They can, however, help you address the root causes of imbalance in the body – of which unhealthy hair is a symptom.
Triggers for hair loss include stress, hormonal imbalance, aging, illness, chemical hair treatments, heredity, side effects of medication, and environmental pollution. These can result in a range of hair problems – dandruff, alopecia, thinning of hair, and early graying, for instance. Balayam yoga is one of several yogic practices that enhance blood flow to the scalp and improve hair health. These yoga poses help treat the underlying cause of the hair problem, be it hormonal, digestive, or psychological, restoring hair health in the process.1 2
id="balance-doshas-ayurvedic-theory-on-how-balayam-yoga-works">Balance Doshas: Ayurvedic Theory On How Balayam Yoga Works
In Ayurveda, hair and nails are malas – vestigial products of the metabolic processes that go into the formation of the skeletal system. The effect of the three doshas or humors – vata, pitta, kapha – on asthi dhatu (bones/skeletal system) also reflects on hair and nails. The excessive influence of any one dosha, but particularly vata and pitta, could lead to the distress signals of dandruff, premature graying, hair loss, or thinning. Yoga moves asanas such as balayam help balance these doshas, strengthen asthi dhatu, and rejuvenate the hair. The roots of your hair follicles are also thought to be connected to your fingernails. By rubbing the nails against each other, you pump up blood circulation to the scalp via this channel.3 4 5
Practice Balayam Yoga For 5 Minutes Daily
Practicing balayam yoga is as easy as it can get! Simply bring the hands close to the chest, curl the fingers inward, and rub the nails against each other. Thumbs should be held upright. Practice this for 2–5 minutes daily for at least a month. This is thought to make your hair lustrous and strong.6 7
Balayam Yoga Works For Both Men And Women
Some unvalidated sources say balayam yoga is only for men since it could stimulate the growth of facial hair among women! But there’s no hard evidence to back this up. The general consensus among yoga practitioners is that anyone can practice balayam yoga. And the good thing about balayam yoga is that there are no side effects. So, even if you’re skeptical, give it a shot, we say – it doesn’t hurt to try! Just don’t attempt it if your nails or skin around them are injured in any way.
id="supplement-balayam-yoga-with-other-asanas-for-hair-health">Supplement Balayam Yoga With Other Asanas For Hair Health
Supplement balayam yoga with other yoga asanas to ward off hair problems and tone other body systems. Needless to say, you need to eat wholesome food, maintain a healthy lifestyle, and treat any underlying problems affecting your hair as well. Also, it is worth bearing in mind that the long-term practice of yoga can mean a head of shiny, happy hair, aside from fending off other health conditions that affect hair quality.
Try these asanas along with balayam yoga:
Shirshasan: strengthens hair roots and improves blood circulation to the head
Sarvangasan/matsyasan: tones the digestive and excretory system; balances doshas
Safety Tip: If you have never tried these poses or breathing techniques before, or have any underlying medical condition, consult your doctor and a qualified yoga professional before attempting them.
|↑1||Russel, Kristin. Yoga For Hair Growth. Inner Light Publishers. 2012.|
|↑2, ↑5, ↑9||Tharewal, Bhavana and Milind Aware. IMPORTANCE OF YOGA IN KESHAVIKAR. Journal of Sanskrit Samhita Siddhanta. Vol 2|3: Oct-Dec, 2016.|
|↑3||Asthi Dhatu: A Closer Look at the Bones from the Ayurvedic Perspective.
|↑4||Dash, Bhagwan, Acharya Manfred M. Jounious. Handbook of Ayurveda. Concept Publishing Company. 1997.|
|↑6||Yoga Mudras for Hair Growth. Akshi Yogashala.|
|↑7||Shake Off The Dandruff with Yoga.The Art Of Living.|
|↑8||Shake Off The Dandruff with Yoga. The Art Of Living.|
|↑10||Yoga for Hair Growth and to Stop Hair Loss. The Art of Living.|