By Faye Martins
Practicing Yoga for stress relief is one way to reduce and prevent anxiety. Developing a personal practice can help people experience the physical and mental benefits. Yoga is a sound method for practicing breathing, mental relaxation techniques, and physical postures for stress relief. The science of Yoga contains may benefits. Yoga practitioners experience improved cholesterol, higher quality sleep, lower blood pressure, better heart health, and more.
Yoga is a proven method to decrease your stress. It can calm you down as well as reverse the negative effects of stress such as a weakened immune system and/or increased blood pressure. With that said, plan your Yoga practice and lifestyle around reliable health information in order to enjoy the maximum benefits. It is wise to consult your physician about any physical activity you participate in, including Yoga practice.
Yoga poses help release physical blockages like muscle knots, which also releases emotional tension. In addition, Yoga can help with mood-boosting endorphins, which create a feeling of happiness. Yoga for stress relief is a viable solution when you are overwhelmed. Yoga is a way to reduce stress, by making oneself aware of changing physical sensations. You also learn to cultivate positive emotions by focusing on solutions instead of worrying the quality of life away.
Yoga is a fantastic way to improve your sleep quality and reduce stress through deep breathing. Pranayama, or breathing exercises, are easy to learn and require moderate practice. In addition to this, the mindful aspect of practicing Yoga will improve your mental processes, which can enhance innovative thought generation and problem-solving skills.
Yoga is a series of mental and physical exercises designed to relieve tension in the body and mind. Yoga classes often include dhyana or meditation that helps us cope with stress and feel inner peace during challenging times. Meditation helps students manage the daily stress in life. Finding a type of meditation that works well for your students gives them gentle guidance toward states of inner calm.
As you can see in the video above, breathing can be a casual part of one’s daily Yoga training session. We practice Yogic breathing (pranayama) for many reasons. Pranayama can be practiced for energizing, cooling, or relaxing the body and mind. Yoga can be practiced with many different classic breathing exercises, such as Nadi Shodhana, Bhramari, or Ujjayi. Traditional pranayama can be practiced as can be seen in the Swami Ramdev video below.
Practical Application in Life
You may automatically think that practicing awareness and acceptance will cause even more worrying thoughts. However, this can help you have fewer negative thoughts and be less affected by them. You can get rid of negative thoughts or change their pattern with mindfulness techniques like awareness, acceptance, or location (eventually being present in the present experience).
From Restorative (holding) to Vinyasa (flowing), there are many ways to practice postures. Practicing Yoga poses help the mind cope with worrying. So much of our time is wasted by worrying about matters that are beyond our control. Relaxing poses such as Camel, Easy Pose, or Pose of a Child can help reduce stress. Slow your mind and breathe, when practicing postures. In addition to posturing, we use the breath and inner stillness to train the mind in order to relax.
Practicing Yoga Nidra delivers both physical and mental benefits. Yoga Nidra has a positive impact on social support, mood improvements, and mindfulness. Additionally, Yoga Nidra can also offer stress relief after just one session. Yoga Nidra, a guided meditation, offers deep relaxation and alleviates stress. If you have trouble sleeping, this may be helpful for you. You can do it on Zoom, with a teacher, or via a pre-recorded video.
Yoga Nidra for Insomnia
These days in conjunction with your yoga routine, you can enjoy a perfect night’s rest by adding some self-care and a targeted stress relief session. Yoga Nidra is a tranquil meditation technique based on relaxation, mental imagery, and sound, making it easy for any yogi to practice this when oftentimes they might be too tired for more active yoga positions or sitting in a seat for up to an hour that’s staring at their concrete black phone screen.
© Copyright – Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division
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52 Essential Principles of Yoga Philosophy to Deepen your Practice
by Rina Jakubowicz
A Relaxing Way to De-stress, Re-energize, and Find Balance
by: Gail Boorstein Grossman
by B.K.S. Iyengar
By Mark Stephens
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Yoga for Stress Relief: Flowing Sun Salutations
By Virginia Iversen
Does the movement have any part in Yoga for stress relief? Do flowing asanas make a positive difference in purging stress from our bodies? Of course, the regular practice of Yoga asanas and breathing exercises can greatly relieve chronic stress and tension.
State of Mind
When we live in a state of anxiety and stress, our bodies and minds eventually become uneasy. Subsequently, this state of uneasiness can even result in cardiovascular disease, adrenal fatigue, and depression. Therefore, practicing Yoga regularly, will calm your mind and release muscular tension. After all, when you add pranayama exercises, this will create states of blissful relaxation.
Movement for Release
We should consider the practice of Sun Salutations when addressing Yoga for stress relief. The Sun Salutation is a series of twelve poses that is foundational to many Yoga practices. The movements of the Sun Salutation warm up the entire body. Traditionally, the Sun Salutation is practiced at sunrise in honor of the warmth and majesty of our sun. The upward and downward action of the body, creates a balanced body.
Sun Salutations for the Mind
Generally speaking, as we practice the movements of the Sun Salutation, we feel our connection with Heaven and Earth. For complete instructions on how to practice both the A and B series of the Sun Salutation, please refer to these videos on this blog post.
If you practice the Sun Salutation in a flowing or linked manner with the breath, the capacity of this practice for relieving stress and tension is profound. Many Yoga practitioners link the poses of the Sun Salutation together through the transitional movements of Downward Facing Dog and Upward-Facing Dog.
Additionally, jump backs are not recommended for people with joint problems in the lower back and feet. Consequently, the jump back adds more impact to the landing. Some people have no problems, while others have injuries. However, for those who have no problems, jumping back will keep your body strong, limber, and warm. As a result, the physically challenging nature of practicing a series of flowing has benefits. Finally, Sun Salutations will allow your muscles and ligaments to avoid any unnecessary gripping.
Making the Connection
By linking your breath to the movements of the Sun Salutation, the beneficial effects of your Yoga practice are multiplied. The Sun Salutation is usually practiced with Ujjayi breathing. Nevertheless, this breath is also known as the “ocean-sounding breath” because it resembles the sound of the ocean in a conch shell. In order to practice this breath, partially close the back of your throat.
You do this so that there is some resistance to your breath and an audible sound as you inhale and exhale. By maintaining this breath all through your Yoga practice, you will increase the heat in the body, which will help to detoxify your muscles, joints, and internal organs. Indeed, the sound of the breath will also provide a focal point for your mind during your Yoga practice. It is important to realize this will help to ease anxious thinking. Then, your mind will rest, promoting a sense of abiding calm.
© Copyright – Virginia Iversen / Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division