Yoga Flow for Nighttime: Slow Down & Breathe
Yoga can help us in so many more ways than just becoming flexible. It helps our overall mental and physical well being by helping all of the natural processes in our body function optimally. It helps our digestion, brain function, and biorhythms such as sleep cycles.
When we are busy or stressed, getting restful sleep can be difficult and it certainly makes us less than alert and bubbly the next day. Let this at home yoga flow for nighttime help you say goodbye to grumpy and hello to chipper! It’s important to know that there are certain yoga poses for relaxation and certain poses that wake you up and keep you up.
Doing just any yoga type before you go to bed could have the opposite effect.
There Are Certain Yoga Poses To Do At Night
It’s best to do a more vigorous yoga workout in the morning and this more calming yoga flow for sleep at night time. Practiced yogis have found that the position of our body affects our brain and nerves in specific, predictable ways.
You’ll find this yoga to slow down includes lots of forward folds which actually help trigger the body to relax and prepare for sleep. You’ll also notice this yoga for bedtime isn’t full of sun salutations that will actually energize you and stimulate the nervous system.
You’ll also find this yoga for sleep poses much simpler than your typical yoga flow, but know that they will help you release tension that builds up in your body throughout the day so you will sleep much deeper. These restorative yoga asanas for better sleep are meant to be held for longer periods of time and you do not need to engage your muscles in the poses much because the goals are to actually let of muscle tension to allow for total body relaxation.
If you’ve been having difficulty sleep deeply, difficulty falling asleep, or difficulty getting deep sleep, use this special yoga for sleep flow before you go to bed.
Nighttime Yoga Flow To Slow Down
Grab two pillows to help you relax deeper into these poses and start with them next to you. Put on some soothing music, dim the lights, and light a candle or two. It’s time to let it all go and get back in touch with your zen.
Put on some loose-fitting clothes and roll out your mat, this time is just for you and your thoughts do not need to leave the space of your mat.
Before you begin, sit on your mat in a cross-legged position and breathe slowly in and out of your nose. Constrict the back of the throat slowly to slow the airflow down even more and make that soothing sound that helps calm the inner ear. This is the breathing you can continue throughout the entire yoga flow and if you did nothing else, know that this breath would relax you even more than the poses.
That’s how important this breathing is and how much you should make it your focus. Make the breath the primary practice and the pose secondary. Don’t worry about perfecting these poses, your goal is to just relax in the pose.
Place the two pillows in front of you, stacked on top of each other. Sit on your heels and bring your knees slightly wider than your hips. Check-in with your slow, deep nasal breathing. Reach your hands forward and rest your chest on the pillows. You can cross your wrists and turn your head to one side to rest it on your wrists.
Breathe here for about a minute and then slowly transition back up to seated, keeping that connection to your slow, deep rounds of breath that are your anchor in this yoga flow.
Downward Facing Dog
Gently come to hands and knees to do the most physically exerting pose of this sequence which, good news, is still pretty mellow. Tuck your toes and lift your hips, working on straightening your legs.
Relax your neck and feel where any places in your body feel tight and move them slowly as you breathe in this pose for a minute, just letting all the stress from the day melt away as if rain was washing off your body. Come back to your knees and then walk your feet forward coming slowly to a seated position.
Place one pillow under your sit bones. Check in again with your slow, deep nasal breathing and then moving with mindfulness, bring the soles of the feet together with your knees bent to the sides. Lean forward and relax the neck so your head hangs.
Breathe slowly and deeply for a minute as you release tension from your face, shoulders, then your back, stomach, and hips. Sit up slowly and lay down onto your back for the next position.
Check-in with your slow, deep breathing and now slow it down, even more, breathing just a little longer and deeper on each inhale and exhale.
Bend your knees, placing the bottoms of your feet on the ground by your backside. Slide your pillows under your lower back and just relax and breathe while this gentle incline helps calm your thoughts naturally for about a minute. Then remove the pillows and hug your knees gently to your chest and then roll to your side to come up to seated.
Bring your legs straight out in front of you and place the two pillows on your knees. Lean forward and relax for about a minute, breathing deeply and slowly. On each inhale and exhale, mentally think ‘I am relaxed.’ Slowly come back up to seated.
Grounded Star Pose
For this pose, you’ll just allow your natural breath to happen. Slowly make your way onto your back and place one pillow under the back of each knee. Spread your legs and arms wide so you’re like a star and close your eyes as you lay on your back melting into the floor for at least a minute with your eyes closed.
You may choose to stay in this pose for five or seven minutes to really relax deeper if you still feel your mind is busy. Let all thoughts go, let all judgments, planning, worries, and analyzing go now. It’s time to restore yourself.
Loving these relaxed vibes? What if we told you that you can take this lovely zen state with you throughout the day? One of the key elements of yoga is the breathwork, and you can utilize the slow, deep breathing throughout your day, all day, to remain calm and clear-headed. People will start to wonder how you always seem to have a mysterious grin as you go about the day.
The things we do every day and the way we do them are the rituals that infuse our life with energy. You’ll be able to quickly learn this sequence after a few times of doing it and you can do it in just seven minutes. Making it a normal thing you do to let go of the day before you sleep can help you find the crucial balance of yin and yang in your life.
This can bring you deep peace and creative insights when you find this balance and improve your health. Sweet dreams, prioritize relaxation and life will start to feel more relaxed.
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