The practice of yoga has been around for more than 5,000 years ago. Over the centuries, different cultures have adopted many different styles of yoga in their lives. No matter the style, people all over the world use yoga to achieve the same basic things: Mental, physical, and spiritual wellness.
Yoga is beneficial to your body for several reasons. It can build muscles, improve balance, and even help alleviate pain. However, another benefit that some people may find surprising is the way that yoga can relieve stress.
Yoga provides many mental and physical disciplines. According to the Mayo Clinic, those disciplines may help to reduce your stress and even lower your blood pressure.
If you find that the stress of everyday life can be overwhelming, here are a few yoga poses you can try in order to reduce your stress:
1.) Toe Squat
This is a simple pose that should be easy, regardless of your experience level. This pose focuses on relaxing as you feel your muscles gently stretching.
- Place your knees on the floor with your body pointing up in a straight line.
- Tuck your toes underneath your feet.
- Gently lean back until your bottom is resting on the heels of your feet.
- Lengthen your spine, keeping as straight as possible.
- Focus on breathing slowly as you feel the muscles stretching in the arch of your feet.
- Try to hold this pose for at least one minute.
2.) Standing Forward Bend ( Uttanasana)
In this pose, you are able to become more aware of the muscles in your body. This position will allow the blood to flow through your body in a way that promotes calmness and relaxation.
- Stand with your feet flat on the floor and a few inches apart.
- Bend at the waist, allowing your upper body to run parallel with your legs.
- With one hand, grab your opposite elbow.
- Allow the top of your head to relax towards the floor.
- Pull the weight of your upper body down, allowing the muscles in the back of your legs to stretch.
- Inhale and lengthen your spine.
- Try to stay in this pose for at least one minute.
3.) Standing Forward Fold with Shoulders Stretched
This pose is very similar to the last one. However, in this position, you will also be stretching the muscles in your arms and shoulders.
- Spread your feet apart so that they are slightly wider than shoulder-length apart.
- Keeping your arms straight, clasp your hands behind your bottom.
- Bend forward at the waist, bringing your head down towards the floor.
- Keeping your hands clasped together, allow your arms to follow your head.
- Breath in deeply and slowly.
- Stay in the position for at least five breaths.
4.) Cat and Cow Pose
These two poses are often used together. They both provide a relaxing stimulation to the spine while also providing a gentle, flowing vinyasa.
- Get on the ground on all fours.
- Slowly inhale.
- While exhaling, allow your spine to curve while lowering your head towards the floor to perform the “cat” pose.
- Inhale again and raise your head and tailbone up while arching your back to perform the “cow” pose.
- Repeat these steps a few times to massage your spine and relax your body.
This pose allows you to completely relax both your mind and your body as you lay completely still and focus on your breathing.
- Lay on your back.
- Spread your legs until they are shoulder-width apart. Extend your arms out beside you in the ground.
- Breathe in slowly and deeply.
- Exhale slowly.
- Concentrate on each breath that is coming from your chest and allow all of the muscles in your body to relax.
The everyday stress of life can not only cause you mental anguish, but it can also raise your blood pressure. This can cause your health to deteriorate if not dealt with properly.
Yoga is a natural way to relieve stress and keep your mind and body in top condition.
At Samadhi Center for Yoga, we understand the important impact that yoga can have on the mind, body, and spirit. Regardless of your experience level, we can help teach you the proper way to perform the ancient techniques in order for you to have a healthier and happier life.