Exercise for a patient of hiatal hernia could be beneficial for losing some weight if he/she is overweight. But the key is to not put pressure or strain on that area of your body where the hernia is located. It means that high weight lifting exercises are not recommended. You must consult your doctor and a proper physiotherapist if you plan to start working out.
1. Exercises and stretches to treat symptoms of a hiatal hernia:
If you want to know about “natural” ways to treat a hiatal hernia, some experts suggest diet along with specific exercises that improve your symptoms by strengthening the abdominal area.
It is debatable whether strengthening exercises can actually cure a hernia, or if they just diminish the symptoms. In any case, consider consulting your doctor about the following exercises.
2. Exercises to strengthen the diaphragm:
Diaphragmatic breathing is a technique that involves deeper breathing for a few minutes several times a day. It helps to increase the efficiency of oxygen flow. With the passage of time, these exercises can even be helpful to strengthen the chest muscles. Here is one way:
Lie down or sit in a relaxed position, place one hand on your belly and the other on your chest.
Inhale as deeply as you can until you can feel your stomach press against your hand.
Hold for a few seconds, then breathe out and feel your stomach moving back away from your hand. Repeat this exercise several times each day.
Yoga Exercises For Hiatal Hernia:
Gentle yoga exercises can improve symptoms of hiatal hernia in a few ways. Just like the deep breathing technique can strengthen the diaphragm muscles. You will also experience more strength and flexibility overall. Some poses, such as chair pose, are considered to help strengthen the abdominal area without causing any strain in it.
Be sure to get guidance from your yoga instructor about your condition so he can help modify the poses as per your convenience. You’ll have to totally avoid inversion poses that may worsen your condition. Such poses include Bridge and Forward Fold.
Exercises For Weight Loss:
Losing weight may improve your symptoms of a hiatal hernia. Exercise, along with diet, can help create the calorie deficit needed to burn body fat. As you lose weight, you should start seeing your symptoms decrease over time.
Here are some of the appropriate and safe considered exercises for a hiatal hernia patient to do in a routine.
Yoga (without inversion)
Squats (on a moderate rate)
Sometimes with heavy exercises, the symptoms related to the hernia such as acid reflux or GERD become worse. Therefore, walking and jogging (at low pace) are preferred over high speed running.
Some other exercises to avoid for such patients are the following: