Yoga postures are effective in reducing stress and anxiety. Have you tried many solutions to remedy stress? Are you still looking for natural methods that work? Like you, I was subjected to anxiety for a long time, which was the result of my long life cycle.
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One day, I decided to give up, but the stress did not leave me. So I tested and found a radical way to solve my problem. Do you know the benefits of yoga and its postures or asanas, to reduce stress and anxiety?
How did yoga practice develop in the West?
Since the 1970s, meditation and other stress reduction techniques have been studied as possible treatments for depression and anxiety. Such a practice, yoga, has received less attention in the medical literature, although it has become increasingly popular in recent decades.
The different yoga and these different postures
Yoga classes can vary in intensity, from mild to stimulating, even physical. The choice of the type of yoga generally on a personal preference and on the muscular capacity. Hatha yoga, one of the most common yogas and the one I practice, combines three elements: physical poses, called asanas, breathing practiced in coordination with asanas and a short period of deep relaxation or meditation.
Studies available on a wide range of yoga practices suggest that this activity can reduce the impact of intense stress reactions and can also be useful for both anxiety and depression . In this respect, yoga works like other self-healing techniques, such as meditation, relaxation, exercise, or even socializing with girlfriends.
Yoga modulates stress responses
By reducing perceived stress and anxiety, yoga modulates stress response systems.
This phenomenon reduces the physiological awakening. It reduces the heart rate, lowers the arterial pressure and facilitates the breathing.
It is also scientifically proven that yoga practices help increase the variability of heart rate, an indicator of the body’s ability to respond to stress more flexibly.
Which yoga to choose?
Like you, I had to make my choice among the different types of yogas. I chose a soft enough, because I was a beginner and I wanted to practice a little intense activity. Although many forms of yoga practice are safe, some are more difficult and may not be suitable for everyone. In particular, the elderly or those with mobility problems. It is best to consult your doctor before choosing yoga as a treatment option.
But for many patients suffering from depression, anxiety or stress, yoga can be a good way to decrease some symptoms. Indeed, mental and physical health are not only closely related, but their importance is equivalent in well-being. Yoga practice is a low-risk, high-performance approach to improving overall health. I could make the observation myself!
Some ideal yoga postures to reduce stress
While yoga in general seems to have a soothing influence, there are certain yoga poses that have a really high ability to help us release tension and stress. Here are the ones I recommend!
The pose of The Eagle (Garudasana)
This pose requires focus on breathing and a visual point, which is an excellent stress management tool. It can also help release the shoulders and hips, which are known points for accumulating emotional tension.
To do this yoga posture:
From Tadasana or mountain posture, stand with your feet hip width apart, your arms along your body, take your feet to the width of the hips, cross your right arm on your left arm. Push your elbows slightly forward, and bring the palms together. Move the weight over the entire plant of the left foot and bend your knees a little. Cross legs right on left. If your knees are properly positioned and you can hook the toes behind the right calf, do it. Otherwise, leave the foot where it is. Anatomically, not everyone can do it, so do not force it!
Start relaxing your hips while keeping your back straight, but not rigid. Keep your gaze firmly on your focal point and make sure that the breathing is fluid, and is effortless. To get out of this position, slowly start to relax and return to Tadasana. Repeat on the other side.
My advice: To fix your gaze on something, place an object that soothes your mind in front of your carpet to use as your drishti (focal point). I use a green plant!
Standing forward (Uttanasana)
To do this Uttanasana yoga posture:
From Tadasana, bend your knees, gently tilt your abdomen, gently dive forward, relax your hips, and place your hands in front of or beside your feet. Move the weight on your heels. If you do not have the back of the thighs, the hamstrings, flexible, you can keep the knees bent to protect the lower back.
Remember to stretch the muscles of the back of the thighs by bringing the ischions upwards (the 2 bones on which you sit), while keeping the weight in heels.
Grab each elbow with the opposite hand and relax the muscles of the eyes, jaw, neck, head and finally the mind. You can hold a few breaths, or longer if you feel comfortable. If you have low blood pressure, take your time to get out of the pose.
My advice: Imagine that your worries literally melt from the top of your head, absorbed by the ground below you.
Caution, Uttanasana is contraindicated for back pain, hamstring injury, glaucoma and high blood pressure. A common side effect of stress is blood pressure, so consult your doctor first or completely ignore this posture if you have any doubts.
Posture of the child (Balasana)
When we are tired, we tend to put a ton of pressure on the adrenal glands, which can lead us to burnout.
The posture of the child is one of the most soothing poses for the adrenal glands, so practicing this pose regularly can be like a giant hug that one makes oneself and equals a good bubble bath!
On a start to knee, we bring the buttocks to the heels. We seek the lengthening of the back, like a small cat that stretches. It is a posture of rest and withdrawal. I use it to relax or between two postures. Keep your knees apart so you can breathe in your stomach. The hairline, the top of the forehead, is placed on the ground. Hands to the feet, arms to the sides. Let the shoulder blades move away from each other.
There is a variant if you suffer from the shoulders: one expires during the descent. Here, we do not try to take the arms forward but we leave them along the body not to solicit the shoulders.
You can place a cushion between the two feet, and between the calves and the thighs, so that you can let go and relax. Stay for at least 10 breaths and relax as much as you can with each breath.
My advice: visualize a soothing color in the center of the eyebrow (blue, lilac or gold). Imagine that color flowing with each breath, soothing your mind a little more each time.
A variation of Vajrasana
This posture has an incredibly soothing effect on the mind and body. Vajrasana is also effective for the digestive system, so if you tend to wear your stress or stress at this place, this yoga position should help you.
To do this posture:
From the kneeling position, sit on your heels. You can place a cushion between the feet if it is more comfortable. Hold the spine straight, pointing your head toward the ceiling.
Cross your arms in front of your chest and place your hands under the armpits. Thumbs point in front. Connect with your breath and notice how quickly the mind begins to slow down and calm down. Stay for at least 10 breaths and release tension and stress with each exhalation.
Stand in suits if you are not comfortable sitting on your lap.
My advice: try this just before going to bed and you will enjoy a more restful sleep.
Posture of the inclined angle (Supta Baddha Konasana)
The posture of the inclined angle is ultra relaxing! In any case, on me, it regenerates me, and I feel like I’m coming back from a weekend in the country when I run it. It helps to open the hips, inner thighs and groin, which are places where tension and stress are concentrated.
To achieve this yoga posture:
Lie on your back in Savasana. Take the soles of your feet in your hands and open your legs so that your knees are on your side. If one or both knees are too far from the ground, you can use yoga blocks , bolsters or folded blankets underneath to make the pose more restorative.
Arms: you have the choice between several options. Wrap each elbow in the opposite hand, stretching very slightly. You can also let them simply rest on the ground, palms up to the sky. My favorite version is to put a hand on the center of the heart and a hand on the belly, creating a soothing connection in you.
Stay as long as you want in this very sweet and relaxing position. Remember to breathe slowly out of this position.
My advice: this is an excellent opportunity to reinforce a positive and soothing message for you. With each inspiration and expiration, repeat the words “I am calm and relaxed,” or “I let go.” I prefer “I let go”
I hope these tips will help you practice yoga to reduce your stress. These postures are simple and I usually do them at any time of the evening, at home, because they help me to relax before going to sleep.