Yoga for Anxiety(Guide)

Yoga for Anxiety
JuanitaHFNE

Head of Content & Founder @ HFNE(Half Full Not Empty) (or, in plain English, I'm the lady responsible for ensuring that every blog post we publish is EPIC).

In this article “Yoga for anxiety,” we will present you some yoga poses which are considered to be helpful to overcome anxiety. 

Yoga for Anxiety(Guide)

Yoga for Anxiety; Poses

There are various yoga poses that can reduce your anxiety, such as big toe pose (padangusthasana), bound angle pose (baddha konasana), bow pose (dhanurasana), bridge pose, camel pose (ustrasana), cat pose (marjaryasana), channel cleaning breath (nadi shodhana pranayama), and cow pose (bitilasana).

Big toe pose 

Padangusthasana is a yoga pose that gently lengthens and strengthens even the tight hamstrings.

Performance technique: 

Step 1

Stand in Tadasana. Spread your legs so that between the feet is about 30 cm. The outer sides of the feet and hips should be in line. Tighten your thigh muscles and tighten your patella. On the inhalation, keeping your legs entirely straight, lean forward, moving your torso and head as a whole. The crease should begin at the hip joints, not at the waist. Bending over, grip the big toes firmly with a ring of three fingers: with your thumb, forefinger, and middle fingers.

Step 2

On the inhalation, take your shoulders back and bend upward in the chest area, also lift your head. Do not pinch your neck – take your shoulders back. The forehead is relaxed. Stretch the spine from the hips to the neck. Straighten your big toes over yourself, and resist and push more actively into the floor with your feet. This way, you stretch the entire back surface of your legs and align your spine.

Step 3

On the exhalation, actively lowering the lower abdomen to the spine, lower the body to the legs and bring the head to the knees. Breathe evenly. Do not round the spine! Stretch down the front of the body, actively lift the ischial bones. While tilting, also spread your elbows to the sides, pulling the big toes towards you.

Step 4

Stay in a pose from 20 seconds to 1 minute.

Way out of pose

As you inhale, release your toes, put your hands on your hips, and, while continuing to lengthen the front of your torso, raise your body and head back to a vertical position.

Yoga for Anxiety(Guide)

Bound angle pose (baddha konasana)

B.K.S. Iyengar Yoga Deepika: Clearing Yoga: “Shoemakers or tailors sit in this position in India: a basin on the floor, heels near the crotch, hands on the feet. At the same time, the hips are laid aside until the knees touch the floor. ” Since tailors must be focused on the quality of their work, baddha konasana favors a high level of concentration and attention. Asana is excellent for meditation. It also has the name “Pinned Nail Pose.”

Performance technique:

  • Sit with your back straight,
  • Stretch your legs in front of you,
  • Bend your knees and feet, and move closer to the body,
  • Soles and heels put together,
  • Grab the feet with your hands and place your heels near the crotch,
  • The back of the heels touch the crotch, and the outer edges of the feet lie on the floor,
  • Spread your hips and lower your knees until they touch the floor,
  • With the crown of your head stretch up while stretching your spine,
  • Look straight,
  • Stay in pose for as long as possible.

Way out of pose

  • With a flat back, press your hips with your elbows down,
  • Exhale and lean forward,
  • Lower your head to the floor and then your chin,
  • With a breath, bring your torso upright,
  • Straighten your legs in front of you.

Bow pose (dhanurasana)

The bow pose got its name connected to the fact that a person’s body after entering the pose takes the form of a bow: the body and legs form the body of the bow (teteva), and the hands – a rope that pulls the ends of the teteva together.

Performance technique:

  • Lie on your stomach, bring your heels closer to your buttocks,
  • Lift the lower legs upward,
  • Bring your hands behind your back and grab your ankles from the outside or inside (or put your palms over the arch of the foot, making a grab),
  • After a full breath in exhale, bend, lifting the sternum and pelvis, then try to pull your head back,
  • Keep your pose for at least 20 to 60 seconds, depending on your training.

Way out of pose

With an exhalation, gently lower your ankles, body and try to calm your breathing.

Bridge pose

In the name of Setu Bandha Sarvangasan in Sanskrit, there are two keywords: “setu” (bridge) and “badha” (castle), all together can be translated as “posture of building a bridge.” This exercise can be considered one of the most useful. This helps to promote health and a healthy back.

Performance technique:

  • Settle on the mat, lying on your back. Bend the legs in the knee joints, and move the feet to the pelvic area,
  • While holding your feet on the floor, raise your hips to the top position.
  • Fix the shoulder joints on the mat (they should be pointing up to the ceiling). Connect your fingers in the “lock” under the basin.
  • Pressing your feet to the floor, strain your hips. The tailbone is directed towards the knee joints, and the chin is not pressed to the chest.
  • Hold for five breathing cycles.

Way out of pose

Slowly lower the body onto the mat. Repeat the pose twice.

Camel pose (ustrasana)

Ushtrasana in Sanskrit means “camel pose” and refers to backward stretches or deflections. Along with other poses of this group in yoga, Ustrasana opens the chest and improves posture. The frontal part of the body is stretched, which gives additional space in the abdominal cavity and chest, which in turn improves digestion and helps to breathe deeper. If we consider the pose in terms of energy, then, like all the deflections, it reveals the heart chakra – Anahata.

Performance technique:

  • Get on your knees, placing them on the width of the pelvis, the back of the feet facing the floor,
  • Keeping the position of the hips perpendicular to the legs, stretch back,
  • Pointing the center of your buttocks forward, lower your palms on your heels,
  • Point the outer edges of the shoulders back, and the shoulder blades inward of the back. Starting from the heels with your hands, open the chest,
  • Do not strain your stomach, distribute the weight of the matter between the arms and legs,
  • Try to stay in the pose (asana) for at least half a minute without restricting breathing.

Way out of pose

Pull your neck back and, without pinching it, lower your head.

Important! – Do not hold your breath during the performance.

Yoga for Anxiety(Guide)

Cat pose (marjaryasana)

Marjariasana (cat’s pose in yoga) is a pleasant bending and bending, due to which there are movements in the cervical, thoracic, and lumbar regions, relieving them of the accumulated tension. Translated from Sanskrit, “mardjari” means “cat,” “asana,” – “pose.” It is very light, so it is often used to develop training sessions for beginners.

Performance technique:

  • Get on all fours, look forward.
  • Take a deep breath, stretch your chin up, and belly down, creating a deflection. Take a couple of breaths in this pose. The breath should be even and deep.
  • Exhale, press the chin to the chest, bend the back in the opposite direction, so that it forms an arc. Fix this stance for a couple of breaths.
  • Repeat for 5-6 times (when performing a back deflection, you do not need to lean your head back).

Channel cleaning breath (nadi shodhana pranayama)

Nadi Shodhana Pranayama (a system of exercises for mental cleansing) – a purifying breath aimed at the harmonious distribution of prana (energy of life) through the channels of Pingala Nadi and Ida Nadi (sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems). Nadi Shodhana increases the effectiveness of brain activity, helps the body cleanse itself of toxins, and has a calming effect.

Performance technique: 

Stage 1

Perform five breathing cycles of the left nostril, closing the right; then the same thing with the other nostril, closing the left finger.

This set of breathing exercises is considered one cycle of pranayama. Try to keep up to the usual duration of breaths and exhalations. Practice daily for 15 days, performing 25 cycles. After that, you can move to the next step.

Stage 2

Inhale the left nostril; then close the left nostril, exhale through the right; and after that inhale through it, exhale with the left nostril.

We examined the technique of performing one cycle of the second stage. The duration of each inhalation and exhalation should be comfortable. Start with three cycles. Increase the quantity weekly. Achieve this gradually, avoiding the symptoms of dizziness or uncomfortable sensations. Practice daily for 15 days. Then you can proceed to the third stage.

Stage 3

  • Take a deep soft breath of the left nostril;
  • Stop breathing by holding both nostrils;
  • Exhale gently through the right, continuing to press a finger to the left nostril;
  • Inhale through it;
  • Hold your breath again by pressing your fingers to your nostrils.
  • It is recommended to practice for 25 minutes daily.

A positive effect on the nervous system and lungs is achieved by gradually increasing the duration of the breath-holding. This process must occur in a natural rhythm without causing uncomfortable sensations or symptoms of overwork.

Yoga for Anxiety(Guide)

Cow pose (bitilasana)

Bitilasana is therapeutically cognition in yoga and ease in mastering. It helps to stretch the front of the spine, gives the muscles back elasticity, gently massages the spine, abdominal organs, prevents pain in the upper back, lumbar region. Asana experiences an influx of energy that helps relieve stress, recommends with asthma, to normalize blood pressure. Perfect for pregnant women, perfectly relieves stress.

Performance technique:

  • Get on all fours.
  • The knees should be located strictly under the pelvis, and the shoulders, elbows, and wrists are aligned in one line, are perpendicular to the floor. Head in a neutral position, eyes look at the floor.
  • Inhale, raising your head slightly upward, direct your gaze to the ceiling. Do not throw your head back very much; you should slightly raise it to stretch the muscles of the neck.
  • Start moving the body forward (knees, palms are static). At this point, all parts of the spine are stretched.
  • Inhale, gradually exhale, return the body to its original position.
  • Repeat the asana 10 to 20 times.
  • It is possible to complicate the technique a little, arrange the hands and knees in a way that the maximum extension of the spine is created when the body moves.

This asana is similar to the pose of a cat.

Recommended books and sources

  1. HFNE “Acupuncture for Anxiety”
  2. HFNE “Anxiety Relapse”
  3. Video – “Yoga for Anxiety – 20 Minute Practice – Yoga With Adriene”
  4. Yoga For Anxiety and Depression: Dealing With Anxiety and Depression with Yoga Poses, Breathing and Meditation
  5. Yoga for Anxiety: Meditations and Practices for Calming the Body and Mind
  6. Yoga for Anxiety: Yoga for Emotional Balance: Simple Practices to Help Relieve Anxiety and Depression 
Yoga for Anxiety(Guide)

FAQs about the topic “Yoga for Anxiety.”

Does yoga really work for anxiety?

Yoga can work for anxiety. It is known for easing pain and calming mind. So, many people practice yoga to overcome stress and a clear mind. You could try yoga for anxiety, too; it may be helpful. You should remember, though, that it is not a total and final solution if you are struggling with severe anxiety or anxiety disorders; in those cases, you should talk to your doctor or meet another mental health professional.

Is yoga good for anxiety and stress?

Yoga is good for anxiety and stress, as it assumes a mind-body practice, involving physical poses, breathing techniques, meditation, and relaxation, which can help to reduce and relieve stress and anxiety.

What helps to calm anxiety?

The following tips may help you to calm anxiety:

  • Practice yoga,
  • Reduce caffeine usage,
  • Practice physical exercises,
  • Listen to music,
  • Practice meditation,
  • Use visualization techniques.

Is Hot Yoga good for anxiety?

Hot yoga (or Bikram yoga) is good for anxiety, as well as depression, especially for at-risk women. It assumes an exercise performed under hot and humid conditions, which results in significant sweating. 

How long does it take for face yoga to work?

It can take 2-4 months to face yoga to work, and people will notice you look better and healthier. However, some long-term improvement in your face and neck, you may see after two weeks. 

Is yoga good for depression?

Yoga is good for depression. It is a way to increase the level of serotonin naturally, and as depression assumes low levels of serotonin, yoga can be helpful.

Conclusion

Yoga can be considered as a natural treatment for anxiety, as it can relieve anxiety or reduce its symptoms. There are different yoga poses that can be helpful for people with anxiety, such as big toe pose (padangusthasana), bound angle pose (baddha konasana), bow pose (dhanurasana), bridge pose, camel pose (ustrasana), cat pose (marjaryasana), channel cleaning breath (nadi shodhana pranayama), and cow pose (bitilasana).

Please feel free to comment on the content or ask any questions in the comments section below.

References

  1. Yoga for Anxiety: Poses

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