Yoga for better sleep: Our tips on postures and techniques!

Giving up the stress accumulated during the day and relaxing the body and mind is becoming increasingly difficult. An excellent ally for our well-being is definitely yoga, which gives all-around benefits by balancing the breath and improving muscle tone. To banish the fatigues and tensions of the day, practicing yoga in the evening–consistently–can be an optimal solution, which also conciliates rest and facilitates sleep.

The benefits of a good night’s sleep on our health and everyday life

It is generally agreed that a good night’s rest is a decisive factor in our health, as is a healthy diet and proper physical activity. Sleep is also essential for numerous aspects of brain function, which include cognition, concentration, and productivity, such that a lack of sleep can negatively affect our performance.

In fact, sleep brings several benefits to our body and mind, including:

  • Regenerates energy (physical and mental);
  • Rebalances physiological processes;
  • It restores enthusiasm and drive to face a new day;
  • It helps us live in peace and serenity.

Therefore, rest is functional for physical and psychological well-being, so it is essential to ensure a good night’s sleep and to be able to sleep the classic 7 to 8 hours a night, although for optimal rest, not only the amount of time but also the quality of sleep matters.

The yoga can be a valuable ally in reconciling sleep and promoting good rest. Some postures are more suitable than others, as they are particularly aimed at clearing the mind of daily worries, relieving anxieties and decontracting the muscles, with particular reference to the shoulders and back.

For a peaceful and rested awakening, we recommend a few asanas (i.e., postures) that help ward off anxiety and nervousness, find yourself and provide some helpful tips for better sleep.

How to practice yoga at night to get the best sleep

A good place to start is to recreate a comfortable environment and a relaxed atmosphere. A great ally will be silence; we will need to dim the lights and, if possible, use candles (scented ones are also fine). Appropriate will also be to place a few drops of essential oil (lavender and/or verbena for example) on the pillow to conciliate a good rest, and do self massages on the temples.

Initially sit on the bed (with a firm mattress if possible) and bring your attention to your breathing. Try to have a deeper and deeper breath, to calm and clear the mind of any thoughts.

Try taking Sukahasana ( known as the comfortable position) now : sitting cross-legged will help you regain calm and centeredness (it is advisable to put a pillow under the buttocks if you experience discomfort). After a moment of centering (5/10 minutes) you can focus on the mobility of the back (fatigued after a long day) and then move on to the rest of the body.

A key asana for releasing tension and relieving heaviness in the head and back is definitely Balasana or child’s pose, which promotes deep relaxation and internalization. Here’s how to do it: drop onto a pillow with your chest and rest your forehead or temple. Keep your arms along your sides, and your palms go upward.

Let go of the tension in your shoulders by trying to relax them, making them fit the bed as naturally as possible. Continue with Jathara Parivartanasana : lying on your back, bend your legs upward to knee height.

Once you reach this position, let your legs go (keeping them bent) to one side, and then to the other. When you bend your legs to one side, don’t forget to turn your head to the opposite side.

The relaxed arms should be opened “crosswise.” This position is great for relaxing the shoulders, as well as fighting insomnia by stimulating the nervous system. It is important not to forget to perform it from both sides, and to breathe deeply. The soul of the twists is the breath: only through breathing can we massage the internal organs and blow away stress.

Not only Yoga: more tips for good sleep and our health

Having finished our Yoga practice, still immersed in the magical atmosphere, it is time to enjoy a good herbal tea. The benefits of a hot drink before bedtime are now known to all, and the only suggestion is to lean toward a pleasant brew that meets our taste buds and gives us a moment of sweetness.

Mallow and verbena represent natural calming agents, valerian is useful for those who have difficulty sleeping, and lemon balm has a greater relaxing effect. To best protect our well-being, then, probiotics, safe allies and necessary accomplices of health, cannot be missed.

For the benefits to be real, it is a good idea to take probiotics as a routine, intervening from within to provide an extra ally for the body to stay healthy. In fact, probiotics are only able to colonize the intestinal flora when taken regularly and incorporated into good eating and exercise habits. They should be seen as “invisible allies that promote well-being and health.”

Using music or a guided meditation, it is time to let a deep feeling of well-being permeate you and envelop you like a big hug… have a good rest everyone!

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