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Going outdoors is risky amid rising pollution. Here are 3 healthier alternatives to morning walk

File: People doing a morning walk in Kathmandu

Just a week ago, the government urged all the senior citizens, children, and the ones having cardiovascular and respiratory problems not to go out of the house if they are living in Kathmandu. The reason for this was a sudden excessive increase in air pollution in the valley due to the effect of the westerly winds.

Likewise, during the whole lockdown of about four months and prohibitory order in the valley for about a month, all the people except the frontline workers were confined to the boundary of their homes only. Security personnel caught many morning walkers for violating the lockdown order.

Kathmandu’s AQI, as of 8am, on Monday, January 4, 2021, was at 487. Photo: Aryan Dhimal/Onlinekhabar

These two incidents show morning walk is not a favourable option all the time.

However, morning walk has already become a ritual, especially among the city dwellers. But, these circumstances have forced many to search for alternatives to it.

Here, we present you some of the alternatives to morning walk.

1. Walk indoors

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Instead of going out for a morning walk, one can just walk in and around their own home daily, for a healthy life. One can just climb up and down the staircase. Else, walk around the house compound and in the garden area or on the roof or along the corridor to another corridor. It necessarily does not have to be a morning to walk inside. One can walk at whatever time one likes or has.

2. Walk on treadmill

Photo: SnappyGoat.com

For the ones who could afford to get a treadmill at their own home, they can opt walking on the treadmill instead of a morning walk. Walking on the treadmill is equally effective as a morning walk. 

3. Do yoga

Photo: Pixabay

Dr Vasudev Upadhyay, the Director-General of the Department of Ayurveda and Alternative Medicine, suggests that yoga is the most convenient and best alternative to the morning walk especially at this time when air pollution is increasing day by day and the environment is engulfed in fog which could worsen the respiratory health of an individual.

He recommends, “Doing yoga for half an hour or an hour or whatever time available in a spacious room in your own home can keep the individual physically as well as mentally fit.”

Further, he explains the process. “One has to do yoga dividing it into three phases or stages. The first phase is Sukshma Vyayam (warm-up phase). In this phase, one can warm every body-part up via jumping, skipping, running, and all. One has to make every body-part move in this stage. In whatever time one allocates for yoga, one-third of the time should be allocated for Sukshma Vyayam.”

“Likewise, in the second stage, one has to try different asanas mentioned in Ayurveda. One can do Surya Namaskar, Padmasana, Bhadrasana, and others. One has to allocate one-third of the time for this stage as well.”

These asanas can be learned from various YouTube tutorial videos available. One surely could not perfect these asanas in a day as it takes time and dedication to learn and do these asanas perfectly.

“In the third (final) phase, one has to do pranayama with deep breathing, concentrating their mind from within. And, one has to sit for some time, meditating.”

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