Yoga when you are tired
On day 29 of our 30 day new year yoga challenge we will be talking about what kind of yoga you should do when you are tired. If you experience insomnia and anxiety and you are looking for the best yoga for a sound sleep, then you are in the right place. I am going to share with you the best yoga that you can do an night and even yoga that you can do in bed for a good night sleep.
If you are feeling tired and exhausted I am going to share with you the best kind of yoga to help you feel refreshed in a short amount of time. We live in a world where we are exposed to a lot of artificial light through screens, we consume caffeine to keep going and we are stressed by work, family and social commitments.
Because our lives are so demanding, we spend a lot of our time in the sympathetic nervous system or fight or flight mode. When our sympathetic nervous system is always activated we will feel anxious, have difficulty thinking clearly, we will be unable to process our emotions or feel connected to our bodies. It is a short time to difficulty sleeping and then all out fatigue and exhaustion.
We often forget just how important sleep is to our overall health. Luckily there is a whole genre of yoga dedicated to our sleep. It is a guided meditation called yoga nidra. Nidra means sleep. Yoga nidra is a sleep based conscious relaxation meditation technique. It is a yogic sleep where you are guided from a dream state into a deep sleep state and finally to a deep state of relaxation where your thoughts drop right off and yet you are still aware.
Yoga nidra or Sleep Yoga is a form of meditation where you get the benefits of meditation and a deep night sleep. If you have practiced yoga before you will be familiar with savasana or corpse pose where you lie down at the end of a yoga class. Yoga nidra is kind of like that except you get to lie down for longer while you are guided through rotating your consciousness through your body.
You begin by focusing on your physical body which allows you to relax. Throughout the meditation you are taken into the deeper layers of your emotional and energetic bodies to a place where you are no longer concerned about your to do list and endless obligations. This will help you rest deeply and relieve fatigue and exhaustion.
Yoga nidra will slow your body down and allow for deep restoration. When you are sleeping, your sleep can often be quite restless and not actually restful. If you carry the tension of your day into your sleeping hours then your unconscious mind keeps going and you can be working the tension of your day out all night long. During yoga nidra your heart rate slows, your blood pressure slows, your endocrine system is given a chance to recover.
One of the most famous yoga teachers of our time, Dharma Mittra says that even 20 minutes of yoga nidra or sleep yoga is equal to two hours of sleep. If you practice for 60-90 minutes he says it is equivalent to 4 hours of sleep. There are a lot of numbers floating around out there about how many hours of sleep you get when you practice yoga nidra, but one thing I know for sure is that it is incredibly restorative and when I am feeling tired, if I lie down and practice yoga nidra it is the perfect way to recharge my batteries.
So, I encourage you to give it a try. I have several yoga nidra classes in my membership community.
Plus I will link to the yoga nidra I recorded in 2010: Click Here
However, do not lose sleep over this. One of my main intentions in 2018 is to start teaching A LOT more yoga nidra. So be sure to subscribe and turn on notifications, especially on my main YouTube channel Dr. Melissa West for yoga nidra. In fact, we are already preparing our bodies for yoga nidra in our live Monday meditation classes in our membership community right now.
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Remember to subscribe because tomorrow is our last day of the 30 day challenge and our video is about What yoga can I do when I am sick.