Day 6 – Q6: When I try to fall asleep, my mind is filled with worries and nervous energy. Is there a connection between yoga and good sleep?
Reply: Most of us suffer from insomnia from time to time, and there is a proven link between a regular yoga routine and relief for chronic fatigue. Before lying down to go to sleep, try doing relaxing or restorative yoga and meditation.
Sleep Yoga Flow
Begin in Corpse pose, with the entire back resting on the floor, the chin slightly tucked and the eyes closed. The arms and legs are relaxed and the heart area is open. Bring the knees to the chest and squeeze them towards you with your arms wrapped around the legs. Inhale, then exhale and roll over onto your right side. Yawn. Stretch the legs out and remain on your side. Bring the left arm straight out in front of the body. With an inhalation, rotate the arm up towards the head, exhale and continue bringing the arm around, in essence making a gigantic circle with the arm. Inhale; the arm comes back to center. Breathe slowly and mindfully as you make these circles. Then use the left arm to roll back into Corpse pose. Repeat on the other side, allowing the arm to hang in the places that you feel tightness. Breathe into the tight areas, and allow the breath to relax and tension in the shoulders.
When you’ve finished the shoulder rotations (1-2 minutes on each side), roll again onto your back and take the arms out into a T-shape at shoulder level. Lift the knees toward the chest and on an exhale allow the knees to drop slowly towards the floor. The head rolls gently to the side opposite the knees (the knees drop to the left, the head to the right). Close the eyes. Breathe and allow the body to relax in this pose before coming back to center and repeating on the opposite side. Take 5 minutes rotating between right and left before relaxing again in Corpse for 5-7 minutes, visualizing the body softening and sinking deeply into the floor/bed.
For more information on how to get a good night’s sleep, read this article on the connection between yoga and sleep.
I highly recommend Gwen’s classes. She is an amazing teacher. To find out more about Yoga Garden see their website www.yogagarden.jp or email Gwen at email@example.com