Yoga For Stress Relief & Relaxation

Most of us live a busy life. Work, fitness, errands, family, friends, etc. We rarely get to take time out to restore ourselves.

The constant moving and doing without sufficient rest can result in anxiety and stress. Yoga not only helps us to relieve tension in our muscles, but it also helps us to let go of all worry.

” The practice of yoga is well-demonstrated to reduce the physical effects of stress on the body. The body responds to stress through a fight-or-flight response, which is a combination of the sympathetic nervous system and hormonal pathways activating, releasing cortisol – the stress hormone – from the adrenal glands.

Cortisol is often used to measure the stress response. Yoga practice has been demonstrated to reduce the levels of cortisol. Most yoga classes end with savasana, a relaxation pose, which further reduces the experience of stress.”

– Yoga Alliance

  • Breathwork: Taking deep breaths has been known to dramatically reduce stress and tension. Mostly all yoga types teach practitioners to maintain a steady breath and to turn their senses inward.

The great Indian seer Patanjali belonging to 200 BC with his in-depth understanding and vast knowledge of yoga has defined pranayama as a “regulation of the incoming and outgoing flow with retention of breath.” Conscious guiding of breath gives rise to an increase in vitality, physical detoxification as well as an improvement in immunity.

It also helps in the attainment of relaxation, inner peace, and clarity of mind. It decreases the effect of stress and strain on the body by shifting the balance of the autonomic system predominantly toward the parasympathetic system and improves the physical and mental health.

– International Journal of Yoga

  • Asanas: Hatha Yoga, the most common type of yoga practiced in the United States combines asanas (poses), controlled breathing and meditation. By linking the breath to the body, built-up tension and stress are released.

“The postures precisely address the tension, holding, and blockage of energy in any particular joint or organ. As this tension is released, energy flows more readily throughout the body and allows patients to experience a sense of increased well-being and strength as well as a balance of mind, body, and spirit.”

-International Journal of Yoga

  • Mindfulness: When yoga practitioners focus on breathing, they are also limiting distractions or “fluctuations of the mind”. In addition to the physical benefits of yoga, yoga has been proven to restore the mind.

Ian Robertson, Co-Director of the Global Brain Health Institute at Trinity and Principal Investigator of the study added:

“Yogis and Buddhist practitioners have long considered the breath an especially suitable object for meditation. It is believed that by observing the breath and regulating it in precise ways — a practice is known as pranayama — changes in arousal, attention, and emotional control that can be of great benefit to the meditator are realized.

Our research finds that there is evidence to support the view that there is a strong connection between breath-centered practices and a steadiness of mind.”

“Yoga practice helps to disrupt our stress response, redirecting the nervous system toward the relaxation response, which consists of a series of events opposite to those of the fight or flight response”

– YogaWorks

The more the practice, the more you will see the benefits of yoga.


Categories: All, Yoga

There are 4 comments

  1. Brittney Dixon

    Its so interesting to know that yoga relieves stress. I am new to its understandings and the more i find out the more its interesting to me. Whats the name of the pose done on the top? When I came to your class, that was the best stretch for me that day.

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