Not everyone knows that practicing yoga before going to bed, especially the basic hatha yoga poses, helps you relieve stress in both mind and body so that your sleep is deeper and more comfortable.
Why should you practice yoga before going to bed, when the body has no energy? Night yoga is not about burning extra calories, nor does it involve setting up the digestive system. It is simply intended to relax the nerves and limbs so that you can sleep soundly.
You can feel the stress and pressure of the day being put on your neck, shoulders, and legs. By the end of the day, parts of your body will feel tense and heavy. Sleeping with stress all day like this makes you sleep uncomfortable and will feel tired and low the next day.
Basic hatha yoga exercises can help you relax your neck, shoulders, and legs while connecting with your breath, keeping your body light. Below, easyhealthylive.com will share with readers 5 basic hatha yoga exercises for you to have a good night’s sleep.
1. Squatting posture
Malasana or the squat is a basic hatha yoga pose that comes naturally to everyone. But with modern comfort and habits, bending our knees and sitting on our own feet has become a big challenge for us.
Using your lower back and knees, you can perform a squat. Performing a squat is beneficial for muscles such as the lower back, hamstrings, hips, and groin; relieve lower back pain due to menstruation; ensure even blood circulation.
- Step 1: Start in a standing position with your feet shoulder width apart. Expand your spine and shoulders by taking a few breaths in this pose
- Step 2: Bring your hands close to your chest and stretch your chest
- Step 3: Take a deep breath and when you exhale, bend your knees and squat. Keep a distance between your knees and feet
- Step 4: When you are in this position, knees bent, body tilted forward, and lower back pulled back to keep your body balanced.
- Step 5: 2 feet can be slightly apart for you to feel comfortable. Place elbows close to inner thighs. Once your body is comfortable, slowly push your elbows deeper into your thighs to extend your knees outward
- Step 6: Inhale and exhale slowly and rhythmically. With each exhale, bring your elbows deep into your thighs. Bring the spine and lower back in and keep it straight. Make sure your butt is close to your ankles
- Step 7: To exit the pose, place your palms on the floor and slowly lift your whole body up and relax your back and shoulders. Keep breathing normally.
2. Plow pose
One of the basic hatha yoga poses to help you get a good night’s sleep is the plow pose or halasana. It gets its name from an Indian farming tool. As the name implies, this pose refreshes your body and relieves stress like a plow renews the soil by tilling it.
This move helps you stretch muscles such as the spine, neck, shoulders, legs and hips to improve the flexibility of the parts. In addition, the plow pose strengthens the muscles in the back, abs, hamstrings, hips, neck, and groin.
- Step 1: Lie on the floor with your legs close together and relax. Hold the body in this position for a few breaths to bring the body comfortable and ready
- Step 2: Breathe deeply and raise both legs perpendicular to the floor and exhale. Hold your toes with both hands and raise your head close to your knees, start breathing slowly to feel your back and neck stretch, prepare for the main pose
- Step 3: After a few breaths, slowly release your neck and bring your head down. With the help of your hands, raise your legs while lifting your lower back off the floor
- Step 4: Breathe deeply, lift your torso and bring your legs over your head, trying to let your toes touch the floor. Exhale completely and relax in this position. Use your arms and wrists to support your back, stay in place and make sure you don’t push your back
- Step 5: Simultaneously focus on the spine as you breathe and stretch
- Step 6: To exit, bend your knees. With the support of your hands, bring your legs, hips and back to the floor and relax.
- Step 7: After a few breaths, continue to perform the movement and try to hold it longer.
3. Happy baby pose
Happy baby pose or ananda balasana is also known as dead bug pose. This basic hatha yoga pose is considered one of the restorative yoga poses made to help you sleep better and relax the whole body.
In addition, this move helps you open the chest, stretch the muscles, relieve lower back pain and strengthen the heart rate.
- Step 1: Lie on your back on the floor, stretch your legs and arms to relax and take 6 deep breaths
- Step 2: Inhale and bend your knees. Place your feet close to your buttocks and your feet hip-width apart. Exhale completely
- Step 3: Inhale and lift your legs off the floor, pointing the soles of your feet toward the ceiling. Hold the feet with both hands, press the soles of the feet down. Exhale as you press the soles of your feet
- Step 4: Inhale again and bring your knees close to your chest. Elbows are placed near the knees. As you exhale, press your knees toward your chest. Feel the stretch inside your thighs and hips
- Step 5: Keep shoulders, head and neck relaxed on the mat. Place your lower back and tailbone close to the mat
- Step 6: Hold the pose for 6-8 breaths, making sure the soles of the feet are flat perpendicular to the shins and the thighs are perpendicular to the shins
- Step 7: Then, slowly release your arms and let your legs stretch on the floor to relax.
4. Fixed angle position lying on the back
The supine fixed angle pose or supta baddha konasana is a basic restorative hatha yoga exercise, one of those yoga moves that re-energizes the body and calms the nervous system. This pose looks easy, but it requires a great deal of effort to bring the mind into focus when the body is relaxed.
- Step 1: Straighten your legs and entire back. Place your hips and shoulders on the mat, adjusting your lower back. Take a few breaths to feel the tension in your spine
- Step 2: Bend your knees, bring your legs together, heels toward the tailbone and toes out.
- Step 3: With the soles of your feet touching each other, press your knees to the sides and close to the floor
- Step 4: Breathe slowly and bring your heels close to your hips. This helps to widen the knee
- Step 5: Bring your arms straight out on the floor and relax
- Step 6: Start breathing slowly and deeply to get the maximum amount of air into your lungs, chest, and abdomen. Press your spine and knees to the floor
- Step 7: Hold the pose for 24 breaths. To exit, slowly straighten your legs and relax your knees and ankles.
Yoga at night: nighttime yoga sequence https://www.tummee.com/yoga-sequences/nighttime-yoga-sequence Access date: 24/2/2020
John Alen was born in 1971 and is a doctor in the healthcare and psychology fields with many years of experience. He is currently working at easyhealthylive.com, a leading health and psychology blog. Having studied at Y1 National Medical University named after IM Sechenov, John Alen is using his knowledge and experience to help improve the physical and mental health of people in the United States.