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How to do Yoga with Glaucoma

In the last two decades, yoga has become a household name world over for its spiritual, physical, and mental benefits, as well as its therapeutic powers. However, few of the yoga asana help in controlling glaucoma, although many of the head inverting poses tested inappropriately for performing. A study highlights that in the US, 2.7 million people over the age of 40 have glaucoma, and this figure is likely to double in the next 15 years.

For Glaucoma patients, Adho Mukhaśvānāsana yoga asana or ‘downward-dog posture’ is a big NO-NO. This downward facing posture increases intraocular fluid pressure (IOP), which aggravates glaucoma. Its effect continues even when yogi comes back to the original upright position. 

There are other positions such as standing forward bends, full wheel, backward bends, the fish pose, and a wide variety of arm balances that can be harmful to the glaucoma patients. For this, a spontaneous but worrisome reaction from glaucoma patients is often noticeable. ‘If not these exercises, then what is the whole point of doing yoga’? However, there is no reason to worry as they can still do yoga by ruling out a few yogic postures from their daily regime and adding some others. 

Way to Perform Yoga for Glaucoma Patients
Precaution is key to control glaucoma from worsening. Likewise, glaucoma-affected patients need some modifications in their yogic postures. They need to follow a glaucoma-friendly routine to keep enjoying the benefits of yoga.

Yoga asana or postures aim to serve true benefits to those with glaucoma by regulating blood flow. The right exercise with certain positions can alleviate uneasiness in the eyes. Furthermore, yoga concentrates on de-stressing the mind and a stressed mind can trigger glaucoma. Always practice under a trained instructor so your glaucoma status improves or at least remains under control.

Yoga for Glaucoma


Start your yoga regime by following Nadishudhi pranayama, as this rejuvenates you internally and externally. Also, watch your glaucoma improve when you do it religiously. 

Method: To do this particular pranayama, sit straight in a comfortable position. Let calmness take over your mind. Now close the right nostril with the right thumb. Inhale slowly through the left nostril and fill your lungs to the maximum. Then open right nostrils and exhale slowly through it. Then reverse the process, by holding right nostril and exhale with the left nostril. Repeat this 8–10 times or as long as you feel comfortable. If you feel any discomfort.


Uttanasana or Standing Forward Bend pose is a significant and simple stretching yoga pose that has multiple therapeutic advantages. Despite the inverted head position, it also helps combat glaucoma. In this posture, the head stays below the heart, allowing oxygen to flow to the brain. This rejuvenates and revitalizes the cells and boosts up the system with a fresh airflow. 

Method: Stand straight and keep your feet apart. Now exhale and bend down from your hips downward and try to push your chest and stomach toward your thighs while keeping your knees straight. Initially, you may have a problem, but practice makes perfect. Try to stay in that position for at least 30 seconds. 

Furthermore, you can add poses in your yoga sessions such as Supta Virasana (Reclining Hero Pose) and Supta Baddha Konasana (Reclining Bound Angle Pose), as these poses also benefit those suffering from glaucoma.