I went to a yoga workshop a few weeks ago about managing anxiety, something a lot of us are too familiar with. I have struggled with anxiety for years, which is what originally brought me to practice yoga. I have only been practicing for a little over a year and have learned so much already. It’s not about being in a pretzel shaped pose and being able to balance like a pro, I can barely touch my toes to this day and still see amazing results from this practice.
Being able to calm my anxious mind is something I have always had a hard time with. I have constant worries running through my head all day and sometimes don’t even realize it. Even thinking 5 minutes into the future can cause anxiety, and it’s so important to live in the present moment. When people ask what the hardest practice for me is, I always answer with Restorative Yoga. I get crazy looks because it’s literally an hour long practice where you hold only a handful of resting poses. It’s the hardest practice for me because when I’m laying down comfortably in a quiet environment my mind starts to go a million miles a minute. Relaxing and quieting my mind is not an easy task for me. I always try to focus on my breath during this incredibly beneficial practice–I count to 10 and then start over.
It’s something I’ll always struggle with but will always continue to work on. Restorative is very necessary for our busy lives. I use props for a lot of restorative poses, but you can always do them without props. Below are a few of my favorites:
Legs Up the Wall [Viparita Karani]
-Regulates blood flow
-Calming to nervous system
-Relieves mild backache
-Relief for headaches & migraines
Child’s Pose [Balasana]
-Quiets the mind
-Releases lower back tension
-Gently stretches hips
Reclining Bound Angle Pose [Supta Baddha Konasana]
-Stretches knees and inner thighs
Shavasana [Savasana or Corpse Pose]
Everyone’s favorite, right?!
-Calms the mind
-Good time to connect with your breath