6 Yoga for sleep and relaxation

Yoga for sleep and relaxation
Yoga for sleep and relaxation
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6 Yoga for sleep and relaxation

Yoga for sleep and relaxation, Thanks to relaxation and meditation exercises, yoga activates the parasympathetic system and releases serotonin, melatonin, and alpha brain waves, thus promoting a deep and comforting rest.

Anyone who has had a long and stressful day will know that it is not easy to relax at night. Luckily, yoga is great for calming your mind, and it can also help you get a good rest. That is why we want to teach you the best yoga exercises to rest better.

What is yoga?

Yoga seeks the connection between body, mind, and soul to connect with ourselves in a harmonious way.

Yoga is a physical, mental, and spiritual practice with millions of followers around the world. There are many studies that have shown the benefits of this technique for the overall well-being of the person and, even, the United Nations Organization recommends it for the optimal health of the general population.

Although it was born in India thousands of years ago, today it is practiced in very different and varied ways in many parts of the planet. “Yoga”, which in Sanskrit means “union”, symbolizes the connection between body, mind, and soul. This discipline seeks a holistic benefit through meditation, concentration, and postures.

Yoga for sleep and relaxation

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Yoga for sleep and relaxation

Yoga exercises to rest better

Thanks to relaxation and meditation exercises, yoga activates the parasympathetic system and releases serotonin, melatonin, and alpha brain waves, promoting a deep and comforting rest.

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1. Chandra Bhedana (breath of the moon)

The air that passes through the nostrils is related to a different type of energy.

The left nostril is associated with the cooling energy of the body, while the right nostril is associated with heat energy.

This breathing through the left nostril helps take the stress away from the mind. Traditionally, breathing is considered to massage the organs related to sleep causing them to send messages of relaxation to the mind so that it can fall asleep more easily.

  • First of all, you have to sit in a comfortable position.
  • Next, make the deer seal with your right hand, press the right hole with your thumb and breathe in through the left hole.
  • Stop pressing the right nostril with the thumb, press the left nostril with the ring finger, and exhale through the right nostril.
  • We can do this breath for 1-3 minutes.

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2. Yoga exercises:  Padangusthasana (pose of the big toe)

According to yoga beliefs, this posture stimulates the liver and kidneys, activating the parasympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for releasing tension and putting the body to sleep.

  • First, you have to stand with your feet hip-width apart.
  • Slowly and without losing control, lean your upper body forward.
  • Grasp the big toes of each foot firmly with the index, middle, and thumb fingers of each hand.
  • Bending the elbows, pull the upper body down, lowering the head, and relaxing the head and neck.
  • Finally, breathe deeply and continuously for 1-3 minutes.

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3. Agnistambhasana (stake posture)

With this position, we will be able to relieve tension in the hip and lumbar area.
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As we loosen the hips, the body will respond by releasing the tension from other muscles and organs and preparing the body for the moment to rest. How is it done?

  • Extend the left leg forward and bend it 90º at the knee.
  • Bend your right foot over your left knee so that your right leg rests on top of your left.
  • If this pose causes pain in the hip joint, bring the left foot closer to the pelvis.
  • Bring the hands forward as we exhale increasing the stretch.
  • Hold the pose for about 1 minute and alternate legs.

4. Yoga exercises: Uttana Shishosana (extended doggy pose)

To counteract the effects of long hours spent behind a desk, this passive backstretch is ideal, as it is performed to improve blood circulation, as well as relieve tension and open the shoulders.

According to tradition, gentle massage, caused by the contact of the forehead with the ground, also stimulates the pituitary gland, which controls melatonin and the body’s sleep cycle.

  • Begin face down on hands and knees (Yoga for sleep and relaxation).
  • Keeping your hips on your knees, bring your hands forward.
  • Next, keep your elbows raised (without touching the ground) while resting your chest and facing down.
  • Massage the forehead from left to right to relieve facial tension.
  • Hold the pose for approximately 1 minute and release by bringing your hips back.

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5. Viparita Karani (legs up against the wall)

This completely passive posture allows us to focus on conscious relaxation from stretching, preparing the mind for sleep. In addition, it has the added benefit of helping the circulation of the legs and cooling the circulatory system.

  • First, you must place a block or reinforcement 10 centimeters from the wall.
  • Place the sacrum on top of the brace so that the butt bones occupy the space between the brace and the wall.
  • Bring your arms straight to the sides with your palms facing the sky.
  • Hold this pose for 5-15 minutes

6. Visualization

Throughout the day we have to be attentive and aware of the environment, so the forehead chakra is fully activated. At night, (Yoga for sleep and relaxation) energy decreases and attention drops to the neck area. If you imagine a golden sphere at the level of the throat, you will achieve a harmonious feeling of peace and tranquility.

  • First of all, you have to sit in a comfortable position.
  • Bring the palms of your hands together at chest level.
  • Concentrate and let yourself relax.

We hope that these yoga exercises to be able to rest better will be useful to you. However, remember that there are many more positions that can help you relax and improve your rest. Ideally, try all of them and observe how the body and mind react in order to establish personal routines that help with daily rest.

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Anna Andersonne
Anna is a mother, yoga teacher, and psychologist. At YOGA LOAD she is the heart of the editorial team and writes about yoga, true happiness, and sustainability. Her articles are published in the Yoga Journal, Happy Way and GingerMag.