How Yoga Helps Ease Nervous System Disorders

Anxiety, depression, and even clinical mood disorders symptoms can be reduced through yoga.

Daily practices of mindfulness and specific poses have been found to greatly reduce mental afflictions. When yoga came to the West, it was believed that yoga would be a great routine for strengthening and stretching muscles. We are now starting to realize that it’s so much more.

Certain poses are going to release tension that has built up over times of stress in your life.

Learning how to breathe through moments of anxiety can help you overcome fear in your daily life. Chronic mood disorders can take over your life but studies have found that through practices like Kundalini yoga, you can get a handle on those emotions. Yoga goes deeper than you might realize, changing brain patterns that are causing sadness, fear, and insecurity. Here are some of the ways yoga can help improve your mood.

Yoga to Counteract Mid-Day Anxiety Triggers

It’s often when we become tired that stress builds up which can cause anxiety to activate. This is where breathing comes in. You can do this standing up or sitting at your desk. Simply breathe in for 4 seconds, hold your breath for 4 seconds, and slowly release the breath for 5 seconds. Do this a few times. You may want to put your hand on your heart or wherever you’re feeling the tension in your body. To stave off the onset of stress, you can consciously breathe deeply throughout your day

Breathing deeply soothes the central nervous system which is responsible for releasing cortisol when you’re under stress. You reduce any stress holding onto your body because you activate the body’s relaxation response. You change the body from producing unnecessary adrenaline for a fight-or-flight situation.

Breathing can help combat chronic anxiety that may be harmful to your health. When you do yoga, you should put about half of your focus on the breath.

Doing so will help you breathe effectively during the times you may really need it. Using yoga as a training ground for your breathing practice will greatly help alleviate symptoms of mood disorders that include anxiety.

What Daily Yoga Does to Affect the Mind Positively

Studies have been documenting the relevance of yoga against many of the most challenging mood disorders. It’s been shown that many different types of yoga can help with stress responses in the brain. Kundalini, hatha, yin, and beyond, these yoga practices have been proven to stave off anxiety, depression, obsessive compulsive disorder, and more.

Health officials explain that yoga is a form of self-soothing which is relaxing for the body and mind. Yoga can modulate stress response systems, reducing anxiety in the middle of it or preventing it completely. Yoga helps reduce the heart rate which lowers blood pressure, making it easier to breathe. When you can breathe easily, you’re more relaxed.

Yoga also helps you feel as though you’re a part of a healthy community. As much of our anxiety comes from a feeling of separation, it can be helpful to be around people that genuinely seem to care about your well-being. When you focus on poses, you can start to quiet the mind and just be. This has been reported to be excellent therapy for those with anxious minds that never seem to quiet down. The poses that help with the mind and the nervous system are endless in yoga but here are some worth mentioning;

  • Child’s Pose
  • Downward Dog
  • Warrior I
  • Mountain Pose
  • Bridge Pose
  • Cat/Cow Pose

Mindfulness Aspects of Yoga

Mindfulness of your inner thoughts is like blowing out a candle that could have caused a fire. It really is the secret to all our inner conflicts. There is the possibility of controlling your thoughts so they don’t cause the worry that creates the anxiety symptoms. It is a complex cycle, the way the mind works. Learning to not react to any of the momentary thoughts you have will go a long way in preventing anxiety.

Mindfulness meditation, which is incorporated in every yoga class, has been proven to ease psychologic stress. Corpse pose at the end of yoga is said to be one of the most important poses you can learn. After a class that promotes inward awareness and alleviates body stress, corpse pose is the space where you go within. You quiet the mind and give yourself a rest from the constant chatter. If thoughts come up, you learn to watch them come and go. If emotions arise, through practice, you can learn to lean into them, and release them.

Through yoga, you can tap into the body, mind, and soul. You release your worries and through the practice, learn how to manage your thoughts. You are not alone in your struggles and spending time with like-minded people through your yoga practice will allow you to share how you’re feeling. Yoga has become a powerful method to overcome addiction and relieve symptoms of mood disorders.

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Meera Watts is a yoga teacher, entrepreneur and mom. Her writing on yoga and holistic health has appeared in Elephant Journal, Yoganonymous, OMtimes and others. She’s also the founder and owner of Siddhi Yoga International, a yoga teacher training school based in Singapore. Siddhi Yoga runs intensive, residential trainings in India (Rishikesh, Goa and Dharamshala), Indonesia (Bali)

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