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Life can become stressful at times, causing us to think of worst-case scenarios.
Anxiety is at an all-time high for many of us right now due to the pandemic.
This is where the wonders of yoga come into play, the following 7 yoga poses will help to ease your mind and relieve you of your anxiety.
1. CHILD’S POSE
The child’s pose is a beginner level resting pose that’s primary benefit involves calming the mind and relieving you of stress and fatigue.
This pose stretches various joints in your body that are succumbed to stiffness due to a lack of mobility. Some of the joints include the hips, thighs, ankles, and shoulders. Stretching these joints will give you a sense of relief and puts your body at ease.
Because this pose stretches your back and neck muscles, it can be therapeutic for your posture.
How to: Lie your torso on your knees and with your knees hip-width apart. Stretch your arms outward ahead of you with your palms facing toward the floor. Relax your shoulders and extend out as far as you can ahead of you while maintaining deep calm breathing.
2. COW POSE
The cow pose is a yoga pose that helps you align your spine, relieving you of stress in your back and neck.
You’ll also feel a good stretch on your front torso and in your neck.
The cow pose also stretches your abdominal organs as well which can make you feel more relaxed and centered.
How to: Your starting position should be on all fours, similiar to a dog. Make sure your entire body is aligned properly, your knees should be parallel with your hips and tour wrists with your shoulders. Align your head in a central position with your gaze looking out ahead of you. Then slowly raise your chest out, opening up the rib cage as you gaze towards the ceiling. Make an effort to control your breathing pattern here.
3. STANDING FORWARD BEND
The standing forward bend offers a variety of health benefits for you.
It can be therapeutic for various health conditions such as asthma and high blood pressure.
The standing forward bend also has the potential to strengthen your knees, improve digestion.
Lastly, it can relieve women from mood swings, sleep problems, hot flashes, and changes in metabolism that are associated with menopause.
How to: Stand up straight with your feet together and slowly bend over feeling the stretch spreading down your back. Place your hands near your feet out in front of you. Spread your elbows out laterally thereby extending your chest and opening up the rib cage. Make an effort not to hyperextend your knees and keep your legs as straight as possible. Let your shoulders drop to the floor, releasing the tension in that area.
4. SEATED FORWARD BEND
The seated folded bend has the ability to allow you to fully stretch your shoulders, spine, and hamstrings.
Because of its ability to relieve tightness, the seated forward bend can relieve mild depression and stress which can lead to increases in energy levels as well as improve your mood.
How to: Sit on the mat or floor and keep your legs straight facing in front of you. Elevate your arms straight above your head imagining your reaching for the sky. Take a deep breath in and lower your torso towards your legs. Continue inhaling and exhaling as you slowly descend into your hips. Keep your entire body centered. Once you have touched your legs with your stomach (or as far as you can go) take your outstretched arms and hold your ankles.
5. SEATED LOTUS POSE
The seated lotus pose originated in meditative practices that were developed in India.
The seated lotus pose involves you crossing your legs which can result in the stimulation of the pelvis, spine, abdomen, and bladder.
It also has the potential to relieve sciatica pain and menstrual pain as well.
How to: Take a seat on the mat or floor with your legs extended and your arms at your side. From here take one of your legs and place it over to the opposite hip, resting your foot on the crease of the hip. Repeat this step with the other legs until your legs are Criss-crossed. From here you should make a conscious effort to pull your knees closer together as much as you can. Maintain a tall posture with your chest up and your back straight. Take your hands and place them on your legs with your palms facing up.
6. CAMEL POSE
The camel pose opens up your rib cage which can help improve your ability to breathe.
You can expect your back muscles to strengthen which can result in improved posture.
This pose stretches the entire front of your body, which should give you a nice sense of calmness once you release yourself from this position.
How to: Kneel down and sit on your shins with your hips over your knees. Slowly raise your hands past your armpits and over while opening your chest and rib cage. Continue to elevate your chest with the goal of making it parallel to the ceiling. Take your hands and reach for your heels behind you as you bring your hips forwards. Your hips should be extended outward over your knees. Be sure to maintain a tight core to keep your posture, finish by slowly lowering back down to the starting position.
7. LEGS UP THE WALL POSE
This pose is self-explanatory but offers a nice stretch and will help to relieve you of anxiety.
It has the potential to lower blood pressure and relieve cramps in your legs and back.
How to: Sit down next to a wall, the wall should be in front of you. Bring your legs to the side parallel to the wall and then slowly elevate them up onto the wall. You can place your hands on the floor to maintain balance. Your upper body should be flat on the floor, slowly shift your weight closer to the wall until your butt is completely against the wall. Let your upper body rest and maintain this position with your eyes closed.