Jan 31, 2019
Guest article by Krista Harper
Yoga is often thought to be best when practiced in the morning—a great way to ease into the day and get the blood flowing. But the truth is yoga can deliver real health benefits when done shortly before bedtime. If you’ve been having a difficult time getting the recommended seven or more hours of sleep each night, then maybe a downward facing dog is in order. Read on to learn about the benefits of doing yoga poses at bedtime.
It Preps Your Body For Sleep
Yoga is a great way to help relax your body and make you feel drowsy sooner. It engages the parasympathetic nervous system, which de-stresses us and helps us prepare for sleep. According to a national survey, over 55% of respondents that practiced yoga reported it helped them sleep better. Although we don’t know what time of the day they did yoga, doing it before bedtime can contribute to better rest through every sleep stage.
It Clears the Head of Distracting Thoughts
Many of us have the tendency to replay bad moments from our day in our head when we get into bed or worry about tasks that need to be done or the future in general. Because yoga forces us to focus on the present moment by controlling our breathing and stretching, negative thoughts are more likely to evaporate and less likely to distract us. By preventing our mind from racing, yoga can help us all asleep faster.
It’s also a great tool to help you deal with negative thoughts and emotions.
It Eases Aches and Pains
Regularly practicing yoga can help relieve chronic pain, and research shows that it counteracts changes in the brain that pain can bring about. Many yoga poses help increase blood circulation to reduce inflammation to joints and muscles. The stretching involved in many yoga moves can help ease pain and allow us to fall and stay asleep.
It Prevents Us From Using a Mobile Device
If your idea of a soothing bedtime activity is to scroll through Instagram or surf online, this habit may be preventing you from getting a good night’s sleep. The blue light emitted from many mobile screens can slow down our production of melatonin and disrupt our circadian rhythm by tricking the body into thinking it’s daylight, which keeps us awake. Doing yoga poses means you have to put the device away, and without the distracting light, we can fall asleep quicker.
Yoga: Better Than a Sleeping Pill
Yoga is a natural sleep aid that relaxes the body and can contribute to overall better health. Make it or meditation a part of your nightly ritual and you’ll start noticing how much better and well-rested you feel during the daytime.
Meditation for Beginners has all of the advice you need on practicing meaningful meditation techniques. Browse our online shop for pillows, incense burners, music, and more that can enhance your yoga or meditation session.