Causes of headaches when practicing yoga and how to overcome them

Yoga has the effect of reducing pain is something everyone has heard, but many people share that they feel headaches when practicing yoga. So what causes headaches?

Yoga is an ancient health practice that originated in India. This discipline has a combination of postures, breathing exercises and meditation. There have been many studies proving that yoga can bring many great effects on both physical and mental health.

Yoga is famous for its ability to “dispel” aches and pains all over the body. However, during or after a workout, you may get a headache. There are many causes of this symptom. Let’s learn about this symptom with and how to fix it through the sharing below.

Is it common to practice yoga with headaches?

Yoga is very helpful in treating headaches and migraines. Specifically, several studies have shown that yoga can help you:

  • Reduce stress
  • Improve the quality of sleep, you will sleep better and deeper.
  • Improve posture
  • Reducing musculoskeletal pain

Although yoga can help relieve headaches, you can still get headaches when you practice. There have been many people sharing that they encountered this condition during or after the training session.

Causes of headaches when practicing yoga

If you have a headache while practicing yoga, the first thing you need to do is review your habits and practice environment to be able to determine the exact cause. Here is a common headache cause:


Dehydration is the most common cause of headaches. This condition usually occurs when you drink less water than your body needs. Sweating can increase the risk of dehydration. Therefore, you will be at a higher risk of becoming dehydrated if you practice yoga in hot weather or perform vigorous movements. In addition to headaches, when you are dehydrated, you may also experience symptoms such as:

  • Tired
  • Frequent thirst
  • Dizziness, especially when standing up
  • Urine is dark yellow
  • Urinating less than usual
  • Dry mouth
  • Irritability.

Causes of headaches when practicing yogaDehydration is the most common cause of yoga headaches.


Your body needs glucose for energy. This is especially important during practice, including yoga. If you don’t eat before yoga, your blood sugar may drop too low. Low blood sugar can cause headaches and symptoms like:

  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Blurred vision
  • Sweat
  • Nausea
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Practice wrong technique

Like other forms of exercise, yoga also requires you to understand the technique to prevent pain and injury. Practicing yoga with the wrong technique can strain the muscles near the neck and head. As a result, you may experience headaches and discomfort in the surrounding areas.

Reverse pose

If you have frequent headaches, doing inversions can trigger and worsen headaches.

Improper breathing

During yoga practice, sometimes, you will hold your breath without even realizing it. This can happen when you are trying to focus on a certain pose. Improper or shallow breathing can cause insufficient oxygen to flow to the muscles and brain. As a result, you may experience headaches and muscle tension.

Too much exercise

Yoga is a gentle exercise. However, if you are new to exercise or suddenly switch to advanced exercises, your body will sometimes get into a state of overwork and this can lead to headaches.

The light is too strong

During exercise, if the light is too bright, it can cause headaches or migraines during exercise. In addition, if you practice under the bright sun, it is also very easy to get sick due to hot weather.

How to overcome headaches when practicing yoga?

Do you have a headache while practicing yoga? If you find yourself in this situation, don’t rush to give up your practice, but try applying some of the following tips of

Provide enough water for the body

Drinking enough water can help reduce your risk of getting a workout headache due to mild or moderate dehydration. For best results, you should drink about 2 liters of water per day. Especially, before and after yoga, you will need to drink more water. If you practice the following types of yoga, it’s extremely important to stay hydrated:

  • Hot yoga
  • Yoga is as fast paced as vinyasa
  • Practicing yoga in hot weather
  • Practicing yoga in the sun

Snack before exercise

Snack before exercise

Before going to yoga class, eat a light meal to have enough energy throughout the session

Before going to a yoga class, eat a light meal to keep you energized throughout the session. Here are some dishes that you can try:

  • Vitamin
  • Whole grain bread with almond butter
  • Banana
  • Greek yogurt and fruit

Practice with a professional yoga teacher for guidance on practice techniques

To avoid discomfort, join a yoga class for live instruction. If you do not have time to attend classes at the center, you can download to your device and connect with our yoga teacher.’s teachers will guide you to practice in the most detailed way, but you can still be flexible in terms of time.

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Avoid doing inverted poses

If you have frequent headaches, you should avoid doing inversions such as:

  • Downward-facing dog pose
  • Bridge pose
  • Dolphin Pose
  • Pose of planting bananas

Deep breath

Deep breathing is an important part of yoga. During the exercise, try to breathe in and out rhythmically. The more you breathe and the deeper you breathe, the more oxygen gets to your muscles and brain.

Practice slowly

Try not to rush or force yourself to do uncomfortable things. Listen to your body. Over time, you can increase the frequency and difficulty of your yoga sessions.

Practice slowly

Try not to rush or force yourself to do uncomfortable things

Don’t let the lights get too bright

Do not practice yoga in a room with strong or bright light. If you like to practice yoga outdoors, do it early in the morning or in the evening when the sun is not too strong. Or find a shady place to avoid direct sunlight.

When should you go to the doctor?

Most headaches will go away on their own without medication. However, sometimes a headache can be a sign of a serious illness. If you have any of the following symptoms, see your doctor right away:

  • Sudden or severe pain
  • headache lasting more than 72 hours
  • Recurrent headache
  • Headache after yoga injury
  • Vomiting
  • Stiff neck
  • Fever over 39 degrees Celsius
  • Confusion
  • Loss of consciousness

Here are some common causes of headaches when practicing yoga. If you’re in the same situation, consider your routine before and during each yoga session. Also, try to do the poses correctly, don’t overdo it, and focus on your breathing.

Please read more articles about headaches when exercising or headaches caused by stress.

Reference source

What Can Cause a Headache When Doing Yoga? Accessed date: September 17, 2020

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