Sleep is considered amongst the pillars that supply the body with vigour, strength and promote healthy growth. Good quality sleep is essential for a disease-free healthy life span. But in this competitive world, most people lack quality sleep. Also, with the current situation, there is an increase in people complaining about poor quality sleep. One of the ways to get proper sleep is to release stress in the mind and body. What better way to destress than practising yoga? Yoga has many poses like the yoga Nidrasana that can improve the duration and quality of sleep. Here’s everything that yoga for beginners should know about the Yoganidrasana procedure.
What Is Yoga Nidrasana?
The word Yoganidrasana is derived from the Sanskrit word yoga, meaning unite, Nidra meaning sleep, and asana meaning pose. This pose is done in a reclining posture and works wonders on the back muscles. It is also helpful on the pelvis, inner thighs, chest, hips, calves and hamstrings. The Yoga Nidra pose works on several body parts. It is also called Yoga Nidra, the Yoga sleep pose of the Leg behind the head pose.
The yogic sleep pose is believed to be performed by the sleeping yogis, where the legs are placed behind the back, and the body’s trunk is between the thighs. This pose completely stretches the body and is a common part of the ashtanga yoga practice. It not only strengthens the various body parts but also improves flexibility. This, combined with meditation, improves the quality of sleep. Yoganidrasana pose is challenging to achieve, especially for beginners, but it is worth the effort. Read about the benefits to know why a little hard work helps.
What Are the Benefits of Yoga Nidrasana?
Reduces insomnia symptoms:
As mentioned earlier, the Nidrasana pose can promote better quality sleep. Also, in general, doing yoga regularly as your home workouts can help in alleviating insomnia. This is because you tend to sleep longer without waking up and sleep longer.
Boosts blood circulation:
People who practice this yogic sleep pose regularly see an increase in blood circulation. That, in turn, improves the oxygen supply in the body, which further helps in detoxification. Also, the Yoganidrasana pose applies pressure on the adrenaline glands making them active and boosting their functioning.
Makes the body more flexible:
The yogic sleep pose strengthens the calves, hamstrings, back muscles, etc., making it more flexible as you continue to practice them regularly.
The Nidrasana applies pressure on the lower abdomen, boosting digestion. It also reduces many stomach-related ailments like constipation and other bowel problems.
Decreases anxiety and stress:
Practising yoga, in general, helps relieve stress and anxiety. This yogic sleep pose reduces stress and anxiety, and one feels positive energy after doing it.
Aids weight loss:
One of the significant Yoganidrasana benefits is it helps to reduce weight. Since doing this pose improves sleep quality by reducing stress, it helps you sleep better. This has a positive effect on weight management. This Nidrasana pose may also induce you to have mindful eating habits, thereby aiding weight loss.
Before doing Yoga Nidrasana, what can be done?
Do not start the Yoganidrasana pose without warming up the body. Start with some basic yoga poses like the Sun salutations/ SuryaNamaskar, Downward dog pose/Adho Mukha Svanasana, child pose/Balasana, Triangle pose/ Trikonasana, Half moon pose/Ardha Chandrasana, and Warrior pose/Virabhadrasana. Always ensure that you breathe through the nose and not the mouth and do Balasana to relax the body. Attend some online yoga classes to know about these poses, or just go online to browse through the steps.
What are the Steps of Yoga Nidrasana?
Once your body is nicely warmed up, you are ready to do the Yoganidrasana steps.
- Start this Nidrasana by getting into a corpse pose of the Savasana. Close both your eyes and relax while taking a few slow deep breaths.
- Now turn your attention to your body parts by starting with your right foot. First, relax the right foot while maintaining focus on it. Now slowly move your attention to the knee, hip, and thigh, becoming more aware of your entire right leg.
- Do the same on the left leg. Now focus on the other parts like the chest, stomach, and navel region.
- Now shift focus to the right arm, shoulder, fingers, and palms. Next, do the same on the other hand and then the head, face, and neck.
- Cross both the ankles across each other with some space between the knees.
- Pull your legs towards the head and place your hands between the legs.
- Place your hands on the ankle and pull your legs towards the head. Lift your head and shoulders off the floor without straining the neck and not crouching the shoulders.
- Take a deep breath and put your ankles and feet over the head.
- Push the feet towards the floor while keeping it over your head and the shoulders forward.
- For proper comfort and support, place the heels to rest on the head.
- Place the hands near the sternum, making a prayer pose. Then, lock the fingers, look upwards and remain in this pose for about 30 to 60 seconds.
- To release from this pose, start with removing the hands and placing them behind the ankles. Next, pushlock the back of the shoulders and elbows to the floor and get into Shavasana.
- Relax and repeat the Nidrasana steps.
Beginners Tips for Yoga Nidrasana
- People new to the Nidrasana pose should first attain flexibility before attempting this pose; otherwise, it can result in cramps.
- It is important that you perform this pose after doing the preparatory poses and then slowly and steadily into the pose.
- Use props like blankets or pillows under the head to prevent strains.
- If you cannot keep your head up, take help from the wall or something hard for support.
- Watch the Yoganidrasana video available online before attempting it at home.
Now that you know the benefits and the way to perform it, it may be difficult to pose for beginners, but if performed, it provides immense benefits. While performing Yoganidra it is natural to get distracted with random thoughts and sometimes fall asleep. Do not feel guilty about it! It is a joyous effort where the focus is to enjoy and relax. After doing this yogic sleep pose, you will feel deeply refreshed and rested.
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