A gentle yoga routine in the evenings can help promote relaxation, reduce stress and prepare your body and mind for better sleep. Try this simple yoga routine to start getting better sleep today!
Getting enough good-quality sleep means that we perform better at work and in sport, that we are less stressed, anxious or depressed and that we eat healthier. If you’re looking to improve your sleep health or looking for an easy wind-down routine to help you de-stress from the day, try this routine.
Gentle yoga practices offer a variety of health benefits for both the body and mind. These practices typically involve slower movements, longer holds and a focus on relaxation and mindfulness. Benefits include: better sleep, reduced stress, better posture and strength, greater flexibility and improved circulation.
For this routine, all you need is a yoga mat or simply place a towel over a carpeted surface.
Kneel on the floor with your big toes touching and knees apart. Sit back on your heels and extend your arms forward, lowering your chest toward the ground. Relax your forehead on the mat and take a few deep breaths, focusing on relaxing your back and shoulders. HOld this post for 30 to 60 seconds.
2. Cat and Cow
Come onto your hands and knees, aligning wrists under shoulders and knees under hips in a Table-Top position.
Inhale, arch your back and lift your tailbone and gaze up towards the ceiling (This is Cow Pose).
Exhale, round your back, tuck your chin to your chest, and draw your belly in (This is Cat Pose).
Flow between these poses with your breath, performing at least 10 Cat-Cow stretches.
3. Seated Forward Fold
Sit on the floor with your legs extended out in front of you. Inhale as you lengthen your spine, and exhale as you fold forward from your hips, reaching towards your feet. You can bend your knees slightly if your hamstrings are tight. Focus on keeping your spine long. Hold for 30 to 60 seconds, then sit up before folding over a second time.
4. Reclining Bound Angle Pose
Lie on your back and bring the soles of your feet together, letting your knees fall out to the sides. Place your hands on your belly or by your sides, close your eyes and take slow, deep breaths. Hold this for 30 to 60 seconds.
5. Legs Up The Wall Pose
Sit next to a wall and swing your legs up so that your heels rest against the wall. Lie on your back and relax your arms by your sides. Close your eyes and breathe deeply. This pose helps improve circulation and promotes relaxation.
6. Corpse Pose
Lie on your back with your arms relaxed at your sides, palms facing up. Close your eyes and focus on your breath. Allow your body to sink into the mat and let go of tension. Spend five to 10 minutes in this pose, releasing any lingering stress or thoughts.
Remember to listen to your body and modify the poses as needed. The key is to move gently and mindfully, focusing on your breath and letting go of tension. This routine can help calm your nervous system, reduce stress and create a peaceful transition from your day to a restful night’s sleep.