“Yoga is the golden key that unlocks the door to peace, tranquility, and joy.” ― B.K.S. Iyengar
Yoga professes a complete system of physical, mental, social, and spiritual development. One of yoga’s main goals is to bring mind and body into harmony and reduce stress.
Having sleep troubles can distort an individuals peace, harmony and spike up their stress levels. One amazing way to drop those sleeping pills for a good night rest is by incorporating yoga into your night routine before bedtime. It is even better than warm milk, camomile tea, counting sheep or making use of sleeping pills which in the long run might not be so good for the health.
Yoga is a true miracle cure for insomnia. It may help to put your body in a calm state, known as the relaxation response which may cause you to have lower blood pressure and lower amounts of the stress hormone cortisol.
Are you having difficulties sleeping, then as you continue to read this article, you will learn how Yoga can help you relax and sleep better at night.
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A Few Important Facts To Know About Sleep
Do you know that we spend about a third of our lives sleeping? Well, if you didn't know, now you know. Did you also know that some claim that sleep deprivation will kill you faster than food deprivation? Having said this, it is important to note that sleep as it may sound is an essential part of our lifestyle.
Do you also know that you should have at least 7 -9 hours of good sleep daily at night? The question here for you now is how many hours do you get to sleep at night? Remember during a goodnight rest is when a lot of healing and recharge goes on in our bodies.
Do not joke with your sleep and get serious with some of the things you will learn while reading this article.
Scientists and researchers all over the globe are learning more and more about sleep every day. Sleep is an important function that allows our body and mind to recharge, leaving us refreshed and alert when we wake up.
Without enough sleep, the brain cannot function properly: once the brain cannot function properly then our abilities to concentrate, think clearly, and process memories will be impaired.
It is said that about a third of the general population suffers from insomnia symptoms. A recent Research and report conducted indicated that at least one insomnia problem was reported by about 31% of community-dwelling elderly persons in Nigeria.
The most common form of insomnia (24.4%) was difficultly maintaining sleep, while difficulty initiating sleep and early morning awakening had a prevalence of about 23%. Increasing age was associated with higher rates of every type of insomnia in Nigeria but females were only more likely than males to report difficulty initiating sleep.
Insomnia is one of the principal causes of disturbed sleep patterns.
What Are The Effects Of Sleep Deprivation On Your Body
- Risk factor for becoming overweight and obese
- Difficulties in making decisions
- It can leave you vulnerable to respiratory infections like the common cold and flu
- it increases your risk for chronic conditions like diabetes and heart diseases.
- It reduces your level of concentration
- Constant tiredness
- It can make you feel moody, stressed, anxious, irritable and you may become more likely to have conflicts with others
- It can make you very sleepy and tired during the day which will, in turn, affect your work-life or study life in school
- It also ages your skin
Only a few people get treatment for their sleep problems while most Nigerians just buy over the counter sleeping pills to help them sleep better. Why not search for yoga classes near me to find classes that can help with your stress level to make you sleep better or better still, speak to your medical practitioner.
Discover different yoga classes on Superprof.
Some Tips To Help You Sleep Better
Some habits can help you sleep better at night. Let us take a look below at some of the tips that can help improve your sleep:
Avoid Caffeine At Night
Coffee in the morning is great for you. However, at night, it may affect your sleep. Once it is getting towards the evening time, avoid caffeine in foods and drinks. Learn to read the labels on the things you put into your body. Some of your pain relievers, food drinks, weight loss pills may contain some amount of caffeine.
Eat A Light Meal In The evening
To fall asleep quickly, doctors recommend you eat at least 3 hours before going to bed and keep your last meal of the day very light. If you have to snack before bedtime, ensure you snack on something light like fruits and vegetables. Don’t eat heavy foods and big meals too late. They overload your digestive system, which affects how well you sleep. If possible, try not to eat after 6 pm.
Lower The Lights In Your Bedroom
It is advised that you dim the lights in your bedroom like an hour before your bedtime. Lower light levels signal your brain to make melatonin, the hormone that brings on sleep. If you have to use the light for something, you v=can quickly use your bedside lamp.
Create a restful environment
Create a room that is cool, dark and quiet. It is also advised that you limit your exposure to light from your television or cellphone to fall asleep quickly. You can also take a bath and play some relaxation tunes to help make you fall asleep. Make sure you try not to stress yourself with the incidents that may have occurred during the day. The best thing is to sleep it off so that you can wake up with fresh new ideas to help solve any pending issue you may be facing.
Wash Your Feet
Soaking your feet in a basin of hot (30-40°C) or cold water (depending on your preferences) encourages sleepiness and is more effective than sleeping pills. In Ayurveda, washing your feet is one of the staples of keeping your body temperature down. A foot massage too can help you sleep better at night. keeping your feet warm causes your blood vessels to dilate which encourages your body to sleep faster.
5 Minutes Of Yoga Before Going To Sleep
What we having we waiting for...Yoga.
Practising yoga regularly can help you to manage symptoms of insomnia. A survey done indicated that over 55% of people who did yoga found that it helped them get better sleep and over 85% said yoga helped reduce stress.
If practising yoga can help you wake up in the mornings and kickstart your energy for the day, there are also very relaxing yoga poses that help you find a deep and refreshing sleep.
Yoga is an excellent way to transition from a day‘s activity to a night’s repose. Holding a pose for 30 to 40 seconds can help you relax and shed tension. Having a pre-sleep routine also helps prep your body for sleep by telling it when bedtime is coming up.
Yoga: A Solution for More Restful Sleep
Many studies have linked yoga’s benefits to improved sleep. Yoga is a good way to wind down your day's activities. You don’t have to be particularly athletic or flexible to do some yoga before your bedtime.
The benefits of yoga are numerous and encouraging a restful night’s sleep is absolutely one of them. In yoga, our body is made up of vital energy. Breathing is one of the most important therapeutic aspects of yoga: it nurtures the life force within us that circulates thanks to 7 chakras (or energy points) situated along our spinal cord.
It helps to quiet both the body and mind to perfectly prime you for sleep. Yoga lets you refocus your mind away from distressing thoughts such as work-related stress, heartbreak, anxiety, fear by giving some of its suppleness back to the body and bringing peace of mind, both necessary for a good night’s sleep.
Yoga is the perfect solution for improving the quality of your sleep and avoiding medication, as taking too many sleeping pills are bad for you and tend to be addictive.
There’s no reason not to try bedtime yoga. It might just be the answer that you’re looking for. It is relaxing, reduces stress and strengthens your body for a deeper and better sleep.
No matter where you are based in Nigeria, a quick Google search of yoga classes near you will be the easiest way to find a class.
Check out this article on yoga courses lower stress here on Superprof.
Yoga Poses That Help Improve Sleep
Several yoga poses will help you relax and sleep better. This poses encourages the production of sleep hormones and is even more beneficial than counting sheep or popping sleeping pills.
Remember not to go beyond your limits and if you need help, watch some videos or get a yoga specialist to walk you through how you should go about these poses before bedtime. All you may need to kickstart these poses is the use of a yoga mat that you might have to put on the floor.
It is important to note that you can even do some of these poses on your bed without having to even use a mat or being on the floor or wall.
You simply just need to stretch your stiff muscles and relax - no one is watching or judging you. So like we said, do not go beyond your limit. Let us take a look below at some of the poses that can help improve your sleep.
Legs up the Wall Pose (Vipariti Karini)
This is a perfect pose if you’ve been on your feet all day. It brings lots of benefits like improving your circulation and lymph flow.
How to do the pose:
- Start off lying on your side with your bolster within reach, bring your hips close to the wall.
- Bend your knees and then roll onto your back.
- Push into the wall to lift your hips and slide the bolster under your lower back.
- Take deep breaths to relax while at it
The Cat Stretch (Marjarasana)
This pose stretches the back and soothes accumulated muscle tensions in this zone.
How to do the pose:
- Go down on all fours
- While exhaling, round your back while tensing your abs, look toward the ground and tuck in your chin
- Inhale while arching your back and looking straight ahead
- Repeat 15 times while being careful not to tense your trapezoids or your lower back
Balasana (Child’s pose)
Child's Pose or Child's Resting Pose is a kneeling asana in modern yoga as exercise.
This position stretches the thighs, hips and ankles and helps relax the body and mind. It is beneficial for your lymphatic system and nervous system. This pose is extremely relaxing, it allows you to re-centre yourself and relax all the muscles in your body. It relieves neck and back pain.
How to do the pose:
- Kneel and sit on your heels
- Then bend forward till your chest touches your thighs
- Next, rest your hands on your side
- Hold this position as long as possible and breathe deeply.
Corpse Pose (Savasana)
This is the last yoga pose you should do before going to sleep. You can do it in your own bed. Corpse pose is the traditional final resting pose of yoga practice. You can let your breath return to normal in this pose.
How to do the pose:
- Lie back on the mat.
- Hug your knees in towards your chest tightly and take a deep inhale.
- Exhale and stretch your legs out away from you while keeping your tailbone grounded on the mat.
- Your feet should be hip-width apart and relaxed away from each other, toward the edges of the mat.
- Let your lower back soften and relax. You should not feel any pain or tightness in your lower back.
- Relax your arms at your sides, palms facing upward.
- Check to make sure your shoulders are not hunched, and, if so, relax your shoulders away from your ears.
- Optional: Place a folded towel over your eyes to block out any light.
Please note: when practising home yoga, be careful not to hurt yourself. If you feel the need, a professional yoga tutor can help you do the poses properly and without injury. You can get a yoga specialist at www. superprof. ng
Fall Asleep Faster With Some Five-Minute Yoga Poses and Meditation
Many studies have linked insomnia to a higher risk of grave health problems such as diabetes and strokes, as well as to depression, impaired judgement and memory deficiencies. You do not want to be getting sick because of lack of sleep. The earlier you work on improving your sleep, the better for you and your overall health.
If you are looking for a video: here is a five minutes yoga for bedtime to improve your sleep or help you fall asleep.
There are some simple yoga-based techniques you can use every night to help you fall asleep. Only five minutes of these techniques can kickstart the natural processes that aid your body in finding sleep. You can practise some of this yoga programme about 5 minutes before going to bed to help you fall asleep quickly and sleep through the night.
An example exercise
- Close your eyes and breathe through your nose.
- You should feel your lower ribcage expand outward while your thorax stays put.
- Exhale and concentrate on your lower ribcage falling inward.
- It is important that you be mindful of your ribcage freeing up toward the bottom and that you exhale to ensure your diaphragm is functioning correctly.
- Try to draw out your breathing and take deep breaths. Aim for the following pattern: 5 (count for inhaling)- 5 (exhaling) - 2 (pause between breaths). Note: these are counts, not seconds!
Good night and sleep well.
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