17 May Learn how yoga can help you sleep better
You have trouble falling asleep at night? You suffer insomnia? You wake up multiple times during the night?
Sleep is essential to health and happiness and being and feeling tired all the time is no way to live.
In this post you’ll learn how yoga can actually help you sleep better and feel happier!
1. Yoga helps relax and reduces stress
One of the most important benefits of yoga is that it helps lower cortisol levels in the brain. That means yoga actually reduces stress.
Wether you are always stressed or have something special on your mind, yoga will help you to relax and clear your head.
Less stressed, there is no doubt that you will fall asleep easier and sleep much better.
2. Yoga balances the nervous system
The central nervous system is made up of two parts: the sympathetic nervous system and the parasympathetic nervous system:
- The main function of the sympathetic nervous system is to stimulate the body’s fight-or-flight response.
- The parasympathetic nervous system is responsible for stimulation of “rest-and-digest” or “feed and breed” activities.
In today’s busy world, many of us function in the sympathetic nervous system, leading to an excess of stress and nervosity.
Yoga can help stimulate the parasympathetic system through physical postures, breathing techniques and meditation and bring you to homeostasis within minutes.
3. Yoga eases body discomfort and pain
If you are suffering from sore muscles, joint pain or any physical discomfort, yoga will help to work them out and ease your body into a deep and refreshing sleep.
4. Yoga helps create a bedtime routine
Setting a nighttime ritual is key to sleep better as it helps body and mind recognise when it’s time to go to bed. Wether it’s reading a book, taking a warm bath or doing a gentle yoga practice, it’s important that you find your own sleep hygiene.
Here are some yoga poses that you can integrate to your bedtime ritual to fall asleep more naturally:
- Viparita Karani (legs up the wall)
- Ananda Balasana (happy baby pose)
- Supta Matsyendrasana (reclining spinal twist)
- Supta Baddha Konasana (reclining butterfly pose)
- Savasana (corpse pose)
5. Yoga teaches how to handle frustration
Not being able to sleep can be really frustrating: you start to think of all the things you have to do in the morning, you are afraid you’ll be too tired to do them, you believe you are waisting your time being awake in bed… The practice of yoga and especially yogic philosophy can help you accept this kind of frustrating situations without stressing out.
If you really can’t sleep, get out of bed and enjoy the quiet time in the night. You can also use this time to meditate or read a book, or just a moment for yourself.