Bedtime Yoga: Stretch Your Way to Better Sleep
Can’t sleep? Here are the best yoga poses for a better night’s sleep. Watch this video and try this bedtime yoga sequence to relax your mind and body, stretch and sleep better.Yoga is a great way to calm the mind and body, so why not make it part of your bedtime routine? Bedtime yoga has shown to calm the mind and relieve tension and stress in the body. To create a calming bedtime yoga routine, throw on your coziest pajamas, light your favorite candle and get ready for a bedtime treat. Here are 7 of our favorite yoga poses that can be done in the comfort of your own bed: 1. EASY POSE is ideal for meditation. It promotes an inner calm and allows you to find a state of serenity before starting your practice. To begin, position yourself comfortably on your bed. Cross your shins and widen your knees into a comfortable position and lengthen your spine. Focus on keeping your shoulders pressed down towards the bed. Place your hands at your knees and take 3 deep breaths, counting to 3 on each breath in and out. The key is to focus on your breathing to help your mind begin to relax and focus. 2. BUTTERFLY POSE provides relief in the hip joints, which is important after a long day sitting or standing. Re-position your feet so that your heels are touching. Align your spine, keep your back lengthened and continue to breathe. Feel free to take a slight bend forward for an extra stretch. Take 5 deep breaths, slowly counting to 3 on each breath in and out. 3. SEATED FORWARD BEND soothes and stretches the hamstrings, spine and lower back. Slowly extend your legs out in front of you. While keeping your torso long, begin to reach your hands forward. Exhale as you continue to extend towards your feet. Stop whenever you feel a deep stretch in the lower back of your hamstrings. Maintain this position for 5-10 breath counts. 4. PIGEON POSE increases hip flexibility and releases negative tension. Position yourself on your hands and knees. Bend one knee and bring it forward towards your chest. Place your knee on the bed and your hands on either side of your leg. Square off your hips and stretch forward. Take it slow and breathe into your stretch. 5. CHILD POSE is our favorite pose. After holding your spine straight for several stretches, child pose allows you to relax your spine, shoulders and neck all at once. Start by folding your legs under you, touch your big toes together and sit on your heels. Keeping your knees together or separating your knees as wide as your hips, reach your hands forward as you lay your torso on or between your thighs. Continue reaching forward, feeling the added stretch in your spine. If desired, lay your hands on the bed alongside your torso, palms facing up. Exhale and draw your shoulders down towards the bed’s surface. Remain here for 5 deep breaths. 6. KNEES TO CHEST is a pose that increases circulation in the head and neck and relieves any remaining tension in the back. A soft side-to-side rocking motion also strengthens your core muscles. To start, roll over onto your back. Bring your legs up and draw both knees to your chest. Clasp your arms around your legs, keeping your back flat to the bed. Gently rock side to side and give your spine a bedtime message. 7. CORPSE POSE (SHAVASANA) is yoga’s favorite ending pose. It will bring you into a deep, meditative state of rest, which is the perfect way to transition from your practice to sleep. Slowly lower your leg, flat on to the bed. Rest your arms and legs out loosely and settle into your breath. Extend your legs through the heels and place your hands by your side, palms facing up. Close your eyes and continue breathing. Feel free to remain here for as long as you like. SWEET DREAMS. As you bring your bedtime yoga practice to a close, exhale with a reflection of self-gratitude. Hit the lights and snuggle up in your luxurious bedding, sheets and duvet covers. Namaste and goodnight.