benefits of yoga is a practice that combines physical activity, breath control, relaxation, and meditation. There are numerous health benefits of yoga, one of which is improving sleep quality.
If you often experience insomnia or have difficulty achieving restful sleep, consider incorporating yoga into your nightly routine. Yoga has been shown to enhance both the quality and duration of sleep.
Benefits of Yoga for Improving Sleep Quality:
Based on the types of exercises performed, here are reasons why yoga is beneficial for enhancing sleep quality:
1. Breath control
One of the crucial aspects of yoga is breath control. It involves taking deep breaths through the nose for a count of 4, holding the breath for a count of 7, and exhaling slowly through the mouth for a count of 8. Regular practice of controlled breathing can help relax the body, leading to improved sleep quality, especially during anxious or stressful moments.
During yoga practice, you are trained in meditation, which involves focusing your attention and awareness on what you are doing. Meditation has been shown to increase the production of the hormone melatonin, responsible for regulating sleep patterns, thereby improving sleep quality.
3. Physical activity
Many people avoid physical activity at night. However, research suggests that engaging in light to moderate exercise, such as yoga, regularly in the evening does not disrupt sleep. On the contrary, it can help increase the production of natural depression-reducing hormones, such as endorphins. As a result, your body will feel more relaxed, and your mood will improve, leading to better sleep.
Best Types of Yoga for Improving Sleep Quality
While there are various types of yoga you can explore, not all of them have the same benefits for enhancing sleep quality. Here are some of the best yoga poses to practice before bedtime:
1. Bridge Pose (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana)
Bridge Pose is a simple yoga pose that can be performed before bedtime. In addition to improving sleep quality, it also strengthens the abdominal, hip, lower back, and buttock muscles. Here’s how to do it:
- Lie on your back with your feet hip-width apart.
- Place your arms at your sides.
- Bend your knees and flatten your back.
- Tighten your abdominal and buttock muscles.
- Lift your hips until they form a straight line with your knees and shoulders.
- Hold the position for 5-10 seconds while breathing slowly.
- Lower your hips back to the starting position.
2. Legs Up the Wall Pose (Viparita Karani)
The Legs Up the Wall Pose is another yoga pose that can be practiced before bedtime. It not only promotes better sleep but also reduces fatigue and leg discomfort after a day of activity. Here’s how to do it:
- Lie on your back facing a wall with your knees bent.
- Position your buttocks as close to the wall as possible.
- Lift your legs up to the wall.
- Place a pillow under your lower back for support.
- Breathe slowly and hold the position for 2-3 minutes.
3. Corpse Pose (Savasana)
The Corpse Pose can be performed at the end of a yoga session as a form of meditation. To practice this pose, simply lie on your back with your legs slightly apart and your palms facing up. Focus on your breath, feeling each inhalation and exhalation. Allow yourself to relax completely, from head to toe.
In addition to these three yoga poses, laughter yoga can also be beneficial in improving sleep quality. However, it’s essential to remember that the benefits of yoga for sleep quality are best realized with consistent and regular practice.
Aside from practicing yoga, you can also take other steps to improve sleep quality, such as reducing caffeine intake, maintaining a consistent sleep schedule, and taking a warm bath before bedtime. If you’ve been practicing yoga regularly and your sleep quality hasn’t improved, don’t hesitate to consult a doctor for further assistance.