Ice-cream , cookies, wine – tried and tested but not working ? Then a great stress buster like no other, yoga, is said to work wonders for both mind and body and bring about holistic healing and increase your resistance to the stress triggers.
In general, while yoga is said to calm the senses , there are certain poses or asanas of yoga that work on letting go of stress and tension. Try these out.
- Eagle Pose (Garudasana)
This pose calls for concentration and focussing of the mind towards a single end. It is an excellent tool for managing stress. It also aids to release shoulder stiffness and also tightness in the hips which are the area prone to accumulation of emotional tension.
- From Tadasana, set your feet hip-width at a distance, with arms open. Take your right arm above the left.
- Bending the elbows,bring together your palms.
- Transfer the load to the four corners of your right foot with knees bent slightly.
- Lift up your left thigh above the right one. If you feel okay with your knees , you are able to clasp your toes at the back of the right calf, then you can do so; else, you can put down your foot as it is . Do not force yourself to perform this.
- Take on the middle and begin sinking down your hips as you maintain the length along the spine. Keeping your eyes fixated firmly on your central tip , ensure an effortless flow of breath.
- Now come out by gradually beginning to unwind while returning to Tadasana. Replicate this on the other end.
- Standing Forward Fold (Uttanasana)
Uttanasana is a great way to calm the occupied mind while balancing the nervous system, and enhancing feelings of peace and relaxation . Vigorously, it aids in the balancing of the “ sacral chakra” which when stimulated in excess, can add to fluctuating and extreme emotional dynamism.
- From Tadasana, curve your knees, while slightly engaging the core, and pivot ahead from your hips, keeping the hands placed alongside or in front of the feet.
- Alter the weight on top of the balls of your feet . For rigid confine, keep your knees bent so as to defend your lower back. Alternatively , elongate via the reverse of your legs ,with the weight placed in the balls of your feet.
- Hold each elbow with the hand opposite to it while softening in the region around the head, , neck, jaw, and eyes.
- Hold on for some breaths, or a little longer as per your comfort level. For those with low blood pressure, while getting out of this pose, they can take their time.
For people with back pain, hamstring injuries, glaucoma, or high blood pressure, Uttanasana is contraindicative. There might be some general side effect of stress as blood pressure issues, so it is recommended to consult your doctor in the beginning or omit this pose on the whole if you do have any such concerns.
- Child’s Pose (Balasana)
- From your knees and hands , place the hands in front of you while taking the sit-bones backside above your heels. Now gradually folding the torso forward , continue this till the centre of your eyebrow is rested on the mat.
- Bring your knees together or keep them separated wider as compared to your hips.
- Traditionally rest back the arms along the side of the body with the palms upward. Alternatively, you can pile up your forearms and hands while resting your head as per your preference.
- When your hips or butt do not touch your heels, keep a cushion in between to just relax and let go. Hold for a minimum of 10 breaths and with every exhale let release as much as possible.
Child’s Pose is for the most part a soothing pose intended for the adrenals. So a regular practice of this pose is beneficial.
- Thunderbolt Pose (Vajrasana) Variation
This pose works incredibly while calming the mind and body. Vajrasana also greatly benefits the digestive system, so for those who are prone to high levels of stress, this pose would be of great help.
- While kneeling, sit back on your heels. If you feel more comfortable, you can keep a cushion in the middle of the sit-bones and your feet.
- While maintaining the length along your spine, feel the crown drawn toward the ceiling.
- Keep your hands crossed in front of your chest while cupping the underarms with your palms. Keep your thumbs pointed out in the front.
- Connect through your breath and observe the prompt effect on the mind which starts slowing down and getting calmed.
- Stay for a minimum of 10 breaths while feeling as if tension and stress are being released via each exhalation.
- Take cross legs if you aren’t comfortable sitting on your knees for this long.
- Reclined Bound Angle Pose (Supta Baddha Konasana)
This pose lets you feel as though you are enjoying a mini vacation ! It helps you to open via the hips, inner thighs, and groin— the zones where you can hold your tension and stress. Using the floor beneath as a support , submit to the moment and just let go.
- While lying down on your back as in Savasana, put together, the soles of your feet together with knees pointing out towards the side. To create a more restorative pose, use folded blankets, bolsters or yoga blocks underneath your knees if they are at a greater height from the floor.
- Take your arms overhead and each of your elbows with the opposite hand. You could also rest them on the floor beside the side of your torso. Options for the arms, you can take them up overhead and take each elbow with opposite hands, or they can be resting on the floor alongside your torso.
- Stay on for a duration that you are comfortable with and when you feel ready to move out, then gradually stir slowly.
Try these useful yoga poses to get rid of the unwanted stress and be a healthier, happier you!
Shailesh Tripathi is a Successful Entrepreneur, Software Developer & Author. He helps Misfits, Multi-Passionates, and Millennials confidently identify what makes them unique and leverage that to create a successful career path. He has trained, coached and mentored over 500+ people from all across the world, both in-person and online. To know more about him, you can visit his yoga teacher training in rishikesh
Erin shows overscheduled, overwhelmed women how to do less so that they can achieve more. Traditional productivity books—written by men—barely touch the tangle of cultural pressures that women feel when facing down a to-do list. How to Get Sh*t Done will teach you how to zero in on the three areas of your life where you want to excel, and then it will show you how to off-load, outsource, or just stop giving a damn about the rest.