Yoga For Relaxation:
The hustle and bustle of everyday life can stress you out in a BIG way! Everything from your daily work grind, fast-paced lives we’re living, and uncertainties about the future, can cause paramount stress and anxiety. If stress is getting the best of you, it’s time you embrace yoga for relaxation, and experience potentially, radical changes in your life.
Yoga is a form of complementary therapy, oftentimes used in conjunction with conventional medicine. It has the unique ability to incorporate both physical and mental disciplines. Thus, in turn can help anyone achieve a more balance and peaceful state of body and mind.
Nothing can be more satisfying like living a stress-free life, in today’s modern world. Along with improving mental well-being, a stress-free life may aide in decelerating aging. Likewise, keeping stress at bay, may help decrease chances of developing certain health conditions (diseases). In fact, stress triggers the release of cortisol. High levels of this hormone, long term, could lead to increases in blood cholesterol, triglycerides, and even blood glucose.
When it comes to relaxation, yoga can be life changing. Yoga, even for beginners, can help you relax your mind and body’s tensions.
What is Yoga?
Yoga is a practice that incorporates several different techniques. For example, meditation, physical exercise, and focused breathing. Above all, to improve a person’s physical health and mental well-being. Yoga is approximately 3,000 years old, and its origin is traced to ancient India.
Yoga itself has many different styles. Moreover, is just one reason that makes it such a versatile discipline. For example, paths of yoga include, Vinyasa, Ashtanga, Iyengar, Restorative, Bikram, Hatha yoga and more. However, one style may be suited for different end goals. You can read more about each style by clicking on their corresponding link.
Yoga for relaxation, has been proven to be an effective therapeutic practice for improving physical and mental health, as well as quality of life (QOL). Yoga is recommended for people who are looking to soothe their minds, lower stress levels, decrease pain, as well as improve strength, endurance and flexibility.
According to John Hopkins Medicine, yoga can also:
- help increase energy
- brighter moods
- connect with a supportive community
- even aid in quality of sleep
Significantly, yoga is user friendly. What does this mean? Simply, anyone can participate. Their is a starting point for everyone that wishes to participate.
Many poses are easy to learn, regardless of age or body size. Therefore, even beginner yogis can benefit from the practice. Moreover, you can perform yoga anywhere, be it in your living room, at work, or even outside. Yoga can be done any time of the day, just grab that yoga mat and give it a go!
Furthermore, its a highly customizable practice, pairing multiple styles of yoga together is very possible. Take fusion yoga for instance.
Yoga For Relaxation: Why Yoga Works!
Let’s turn our focus to how this practice, specifically, can help with areas of relaxation. Yoga is a practice that is highly individualized. Furthermore, what you put into the practice will often have an impact on what your get out of it.
Likewise there are many different “styles or paths” of yoga, like beforementioned. Some may push you more physically, while others may push the boundaries from a mental perspective. Oftentimes, each style effects both the mind and body! This brings us to our first point.
I. It Develops a Connection Between the Body and Mind
Our bodies and minds become tense when there’s disharmony between the two in our everyday life. Yoga for relaxation works because it focuses on the fusion of the body and mind to achieve a greater sense of harmony.
Yoga teaches us to listen to our bodies and our inner guidance. Furthermore, existing in the present, and re-establishing the innate balance between our bodies and minds. By developing a connection between the two, we give ourselves the opportunity to relax and achieve a greater sense of ease in our fast paced, and sometimes hectic lives.
II. Yoga Triggers the Relaxation Response
Even yoga when performed by beginners, leverages a combination of breathing techniques, poses, and meditation. All of which help to activate the parasympathetic nervous system to reduce tension and stress.
Practicing yoga for relaxation regularly, trains the mind to remain calm in the face of discomfort. Yoga, practiced properly, can help to reduce tension and relax the body.
Yoga has even been studied in school aged students, like this one in 2017. It was geared toward elementary school students and teachers, and how yoga could effect quality of life. The study concluded (after eight weeks) that yoga was associated with significant improvements in emotions and psychosocial quality of life.
Certain yoga postures like wide-legged forward bend pose, reclining bound angle pose, lizard pose, sphinx pose, and others, aide in full-body relaxation. Meditation is often intertwined within yoga sessions. Meditation alone has proven to be an effective mind-body tool as well. Oftentimes, when practiced together consistently, will help one develop better habits, instilling a greater sense of internal harmony.
Do your stress levels tend to spiral out of control when faced with discomfort or challenges? If so, it’s time to embrace the benefits of yoga for relaxation. Furthermore, rewiring the way you deal with everyday stressful situations.
III. Relaxation Yoga for Beginners Helps to Release Emotional Energy
A build-up of negative emotions is a major cause of tension and anxiety. Yoga for relaxation, focuses on releasing emotional energy through various techniques such as Brahmari, Nadi Shodhana, and Ujjayi. These techniques can help you to achieve a relaxed internal state.
IV. Yoga for Relaxation is a Healing Practice
Yoga’s incorporation of breathing control, poses, and visualization helps to reduce stress, creates mental clarity, and increases awareness. Yoga utilizes practical methods of relaxation. Consequently, may help reduce levels of cortisol (a stress hormone) in the body to help decrease stress, mood swings, anxiety and irritability.
A systematic review and meta analysis of controlled trials of yoga on cardiovascular disease and metabolic syndrome, found it even reduced risk factors for heart disease. These risk factors included blood pressure, cholesterol and body mass index or BMI.
Through regular practice, one can learn the art of self-care and commitment to their own health. As a beginner, doing yoga just a few times a week can lead to both physical and mental health benefits.
V. It Breaks Bad Habits that cause Stress
Doing yoga can help bring focus to unlearning bad habits that cause stress. Consequently, embracing patterns that promote our physical and mental well-being. Generally, relaxation-type yoga, promotes healing and a sense of “taking charge” of your mind again.
VI. It Utilizes Simple Relaxation Techniques
Yoga utilizes techniques such as deep breathing, relaxation, meditation, and visualization to provide full-body calm. Anyone and everyone can partake, from all walks of life, and all demographics. Oftentimes, the techniques can be quite easy to perform even for beginner yogis, with some focused energy.
Additionally, anyone can learn yoga poses and advanced techniques by attending yoga classes, hiring a private instructor, or following instructional videos. The information is out there, it’s often about your intrinsic motivation for change!
How to Get the Most Out of Yoga, for Relaxation Purposes:
- (i) Understand yoga at it’s core: Yoga is not about extreme flexibility. Although the original context was more spiritual, yoga today is often focused on strength building and harmony between the mind and body. It’s heavily geared toward a relaxed internal state.
- (ii) Unite your body, mind, and breathing techniques: Unite the body with consciousness. Even the simplest yoga poses can help you relax when you coordinate your movements with your breathing.
- (iii) Stay in the moment: Stress causes the mind to wander in both past and in the future. Try focusing on what you’re doing at this very moment. This will help build your ability to focus. Above all, be patient!
- (iv) Breath to help relax parts of your body: Some parts of your body may feel tight despite trying different yoga poses. Routinely work through major muscle groups in your mind. Thus, focusing on eliminating tension from those muscles as often as you can.
Using yoga, for relaxation, can be magical for anyone looking to soothe their mind and body. As a beginner, the best way to get started is whatever makes you feel most comfortable. If you’re unsure of your bodies limits, it is to your benefit to test yourself in a beginner yoga class. If you’re comfortable with your bodies health and ready to go, a simple search on YouTube for free content may work in your favor.
You can also leverage yoga apps to learn more about the practice, and how to make it a more integral part of your life.