Do you find yourself going back and forth in the middle of the night, unable to sleep? Or maybe you've always had a hard time falling asleep, but now it takes hours instead of 30 minutes to close your eyes.
With the high-stress level especially caused by the pandemic, it's no wonder so many people suffer from insomnia.
The definition of insomnia is "persistent difficulty with sleep initiation, duration, consolidation or quality," according to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine.
In fact, a regular yoga routine helps not only with insomnia but also improves total sleep time and sleep efficiency, according to research.
Maybe you are a yoga skeptic, or you don't know where to start. This insomnia yoga routine designed for you to focus on poses that bring inner calm to your nervous system and relax your body. Whether you do this routine right before bed, during the day or in the morning, regular exercise is the most important thing to help with insomnia.
Breathing and mindfulness are also major parts of this yoga routine. Breathing through the nose and out through the nose helps calm the nervous system. As you hold each yoga pose, think about inhaling and filling your body with air, and exhaling to release deeper into the pose. Attentive attention to your body and breath, research has shown, helps improve sleep too.
Let's take a look at some yoga moves you can try at home to improve your sleep!
This pose allows you to start off feeling grounded and centered on the breath. It connects you to Earth, aligns your spine and allows your body to easily initiate yoga practice.
Standing with your feet hip-width apart, press evenly down through your 10 toes and squeeze your quadriceps (the big muscle in front of each thigh) to work your legs together.
Pull your navy toward your spine. Turn your shoulders back, and let your arms hang down at your sides with your shoulders turned outward.
Open your palms facing forward. Return the chin so that the upper back is straight. Relax your shoulders. Slowly take five deep breaths through your nose and out through your nose.
Fill your stomach and then your chest as you inhale, and release your chest and then your stomach as you exhale
Forward fold clasping opposite elbows
This pose has a calming effect on the nervous system as it puts your body in an inward focused position. Holding on to the opposite elbow also provides traction to your shoulders and neck to help relieve tension in the upper body.
Stand with your feet hip-width apart, place your hands on your hips and slowly raise them forward at your waist. Let your arms hang down, then grab the elbows that are opposite to the head in the middle.
Shake your head slowly yes and no, and press the weight evenly through your legs. Hold for five deep breaths, then release your arms down and roll slowly to your feet.
This pose opens up the inner thighs and groin that can become stiff and stiff after working from home in an awkward position. This pose also opens up the side waist and lower back. Tight lower back and inner thighs contribute to hip and back pain that can keep you awake at night.
Step the foot out wider than the shoulder, and rotate the left foot at a 45 degree angle so that the toes are facing the front corner of the mat. Rotate your right foot so that it is pointing straight towards the right edge of the mat with your right heel parallel to the curve of your left foot. Open your arms to the sides, and rotate them to look over the tips of your right fingers.
Hinge forward with your right hand, then lower your right hand down towards your right shin. Feel the stretch on the left side of the waist. Press down evenly over your legs and open your shoulders so they are overlapping. Hold for three breaths, then move up to the starting position.
Rotate leg to repeat on left side.
Tight hip flexors also contribute to lower back pain that keeps you awake at night. Opening your hips in a low lunge can help you relax your body without feeling overly energized. This is a great pose if you don't move much or sit all day because your hip flexors are tightened from being in a tight position all day long.
Step your right foot forward and your left food back. Lower your left knee to the ground under your left hip. Bend your right knee over your right ankle. Reach your arms up toward the sky, relax your shoulders, draw the navy toward your spine, and breathe for five slow breaths.
Release arms down, turn to face the opposite side of the mat and repeat with left leg forward.
Wide-leg forward fold
Another inward-facing pose, with the head positioned below the waist and the back of the legs extended. It has a calming effect on the nervous system. Stretching the back of the body also helps relieve tension from the neck to the spine and to the back of the legs.
Open your arms wide and then step your feet wrist-wide. Make sure to point your toes forward. Hinge forward at your waist and let your arms hang out in front of you and then place your palms on the mat. Release the chin towards the chest.
Hold this position for five deep breaths, then slowly get up by pressing through your legs.
Standing pigeon pose
Another forward crease, this pose helps stretch out the mind, body and nervous system and also stretches out one of the largest muscles in the body: the glutes.
Stand with your feet hip-width apart and balance your left foot as you lift your right leg up and cross your right ankle over your left knee. Bend your left knee and place your hands in the center of your chest. Relax your shoulders. Flex your right leg and slowly lean forward on your leg only as far as you feel comfortable.
Hold for three deep breaths, then slowly stand up and release. Repeat on the other side. Stream through this sequence any time.
While doing yoga before bed can help relax your nervous system, give a calming effect on your body and help your body's ability to rest at bedtime. These routines will really help you to sleep well!
Source : CNN Health