We’ve all had those nights where getting some shut-eye seems almost impossible. With our minds racing and our bodies more awake than tired, we know we’re in for a late night when we experience such symptoms.
The importance of sleep stretches beyond how we look and feel in the morning. Individuals who suffer from irregular sleeping patterns and insomnia are more likely to develop health problems such as anxiety, depression, diabetes, and heart problems.
Don’t panic just yet. There’s always a solution and we’re turning to yoga for this one. The deep breathing exercises and specific postures that come with yoga can be an effective remedy to help your mind and body relax and put you to sleep.
Adding a relaxation yoga routine before you go to bed could induce a more relaxed state of mind and help you fall asleep.
1. Head to Knee Pose (Janu Sirsasana)
- Start in an easy seated position with your back straight and your legs extended out in front of you. If you feel like your spine is starting to bend, you have the option to slightly bend your knees.
- Starting on your right side, bend your right knee to open up the hips and bring the sole of the right foot to touch the inner left thigh, while your right knee lowers towards the ground. You can place a cushion under your right knee for support.
- Lengthen the spine as you inhale.
- As you exhale, use your hips to bend forward over the left leg, making sure your spine and neck are long.
- Place your hands on either side of the left leg and shift your gaze to the big toe of your left foot. Focus on your breathing.
- Pause for a few seconds and come back to starting position to repeat this pose on the other side.
2. Bound Angle Pose (Baddha Konasana)
- Get into an easy seated position and start to inhale as you bend your knees to bring your feet together, soles to touch.
- Exhale and allow your knees to fall out on the sides. You have the option to sit on a pillow or blanket if your knees need support; place cushions under your knees for comfort.
- Grab onto your toes and rest your hands on your ankles as you slowly start to lower your chin, taking the pressure off the back of your neck.
- Stay in this position for five breaths as you inhale and exhale deeply. On the sixth inhale, go back to neutral position and lift your chin.
3. Locust Pose (Salabhasana)
- Lie on your belly with your legs extended and your arms by your sides. You have the option to place a pillow or cushion under you for support.
- With your gaze on the floor, keep the back of your neck long, and as you inhale, slowly start to bring your arms together from the back.
- Bring your palms to touch and intertwine your fingers.
- As you exhale, stretch your arms and lift your hands towards the ceiling to deepen the stretch.
- Focus on your breathing and hold this pose for 10 breaths before exhaling to come back to the starting position.
Yoga is a magical remedy for numerous ailments such as digestion, insomnia, IBS and much more. Yoga can help clear your mind and ease you from any tension that might be putting a hold on your ability to fall asleep.
1. How can yoga help you sleep?
Specific poses and postures can induce relaxation and help you ease into a good night’s rest.
2. What are the benefits of yoga before you sleep?
Yoga can help you feel more relaxed and help you destress your mind and put you to sleep. Specific poses can open up the airways and enhance blood circulation as you go to bed.
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6 Of The Most Soothing Yoga Poses To Help You Sleep Better. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.besthealthmag.ca/best-you/sleep/yoga-for-sleep/2/
Editors, Y. (2014, September 08). 15 Poses to Help You Sleep Better. Retrieved from https://www.yogajournal.com/poses/15-poses-help-sleep-better#gid=ci0207569f601425bd&pid=sleep_268_02_locust
Quiriconi, S. (2014, October 30). 6 Relaxing Yoga Poses To Help You Fall Asleep. Retrieved from https://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-15860/6-relaxing-yoga-poses-to-help-you-fall-asleep.html