How your usual bed time affects your yoga practise

Why Your Bedtime is Important for Your Yoga Sessions

Yoga has been proven to be beneficial for a wide variety of health concerns, explains Dr. Marilynn Wei of Harvard Health Publishing. One important benefit of yoga is that it is one of the gentlest and most restorative activities to end your day and prepare you for sleep. Certain types of breathing, such as the Ujjayi or Ocean Breath, as well as some poses make yoga extremely beneficial for good sleep. However, an interesting thing to note is that the same can be said the other way around.

Fitness expert Jim White explains in a blog post published on Leesa that a good night’s rest maximises the effects of exercise and helps you power through your busy days and regular workouts. White explains that while both sleep and exercise are important in leading a healthy lifestyle, the former is ultimately more needed for the latter.

We’ve laid down seven tips for yoga success in a previous blog post here on Yoga India Foundation, but it seems like we need to add an eighth – get enough sleep. Whether you’re a beginner just learning the basics, or a trained yogi looking to further expand your knowledge, here are some reasons why your bedtime is crucial towards having better yoga sessions.200 Hour Yoga Teacher Training India

Sleep keeps your mind in shape.

Not getting enough sleep deprives your brain of the opportunity to rest and recharge itself, leading to a myriad of mental and psychological problems associated with regular lack of sleep. For instance, PsyBlog explains that sleep-deprived brains tend to work harder in order to overcompensate for its lack of rest, resulting in less efficiency and difficulty in accomplishing even simple mental tasks.

The cumulative effect is that those who have less than the recommended seven hours of sleep per evening have difficulties in concentration, mindfulness, judgment, and decision-making. Even neurological functions like physical movement, eye muscle control, and focus are compromised, making it difficult for sleep-deprived people to function well – much less complete a yoga session successfully.

Sleep helps you perform better physically.

Because yoga is an activity that unifies and engages mind, body, and spirit, the quality of yoga sessions decline when your body is compromised. On top of letting your brain recharge, sleep also plays a role in muscle repair, as discussed by the National Sleep Foundation.

This research study published in Current Biology elaborates on how the physical and mental performances of athletes significantly improved once their sleep cycles and circadian rhythms were optimised. It is for this reason that White goes on to discuss that those serious about fitness and exercise – yoga included – cannot hope to be successful without enough sleep.

Last but not least, sleep keeps you happy and motivated

If you lack sleep, you might find it harder to get on your yoga mat or attend yoga classes with other people.One study conducted by the Hult International Business School found that people who experience chronic tiredness and lack of sleep suffer from irritability and frayed nerves, along with high levels of stress, anxiety, and frustration.

Conversely, regularly getting a full night’s rest has been linked to optimism about the future and more motivation to learn new things and accomplish tasks.

With all these reasons to prioritize sleep to improve our yoga sessions, don’t be surprised to find us spending more time on our beds and on our yoga mats!

September 2017 Yoga Teacher Training Course

September 2017: Yoga Teacher Training

Namaste dear Yoga Teacher Training Yogis & Yoginis!

Our September 200 Hour Yoga Teacher Training India & 300 Hour Yoga Teacher Training India Course comes to an end and we are very proud of what you have achieved so far!

Not only have you powered through the intense schedule and been to class by 6 AM every morning, we also have become good friends during this month and created a beautiful energy together.

We see a lot of progress in each one of you: you become more confident, free, joyful and relaxed day by day.

The highlights of this month were definitely your interest in the yoga philosophy classes, Ayurveda, and yoga adjustment classes.

We also enjoyed the mantra music jam sessions at night a lot.

Music truly connects us even more deeply with one another as we don’t need to speak the same language!

Hopefully, you will like the volunteering work we have organized for you this week!

Please share your experiences here with us 🙂

the 200 Hour students during his Power of Transformation Meditation

The Power of Transformation Meditation

My personal experience: The Power of Transformation

As humans living in a world where technology, social pressures and a fast pace of life have become a normal way of living, we do not spend enough time focussing on ourselves and our inner peace and happiness.

When was the last time we actually took some time to check in with ourselves?

We are constantly searching for happiness in external affairs when really all we need to do is just look inside ourselves and realise that everything we need is right here with us, in our bodies.

As a result of not focussing on our mind, body and soul, our body builds up blockages in our respiratory and blood circulation systems. This is what this form of meditation focusses on improving.

The six, deep and forceful inhalation/exhalation exercises of Power of Transformation Meditation, each followed by a three-minute rest period and shavasana at the end, allow for these blockages to be removed and for blood to circulate and flow optimally.

When I initially started the meditation I felt great tightness and cramping in my arms and hands.

I felt a lot of vibrations across my whole body, particularly my face and arms representing the imbalances and poor circulation of blood and breath in my system.

The meditation would take me into a very emotional, tearful state by the end too. After about a week of practising every day, the vibrations lessened drastically and I would also enter into a peaceful meditative state by the end, sometimes even falling asleep!

I suffered from insomnia and a great tendency to think negative thoughts and after 2 weeks of consistent practice I found that my mind was flooded with optimism and positive thoughts and my sleep has improved as well.