Yoga has been around for thousands of years. While its historical roots lie in ancient India, yoga also includes an almost-magical capacity to adapt itself to current circumstances. In other words, yoga is just as relevant in 21st-century America as it was in 16th-century India!
Yoga asana, in particular (i.e. the physical poses and movements) can be profoundly healing. When practiced intelligently, yoga offers deep nourishment and support. Yoga can also very easily be practiced in your home, with video guidance.
Benefits of Yoga Practice
Though there are many different styles of yoga, they all share some common benefits:
- Stress reduction
- Balancing of the nervous system
- Emotional harmony
- Reduction or elimination of chronic pain
- Increased flexibility
- Improved balance
- Enhanced immunity
- Increased energy and stamina
- Improved muscle tone and strength
- Balanced metabolism
- Stabilizing weight at its optimal level
- Improved athletic performance
- Partial reversing of the aging process
- Enhanced mental clarity and concentration
- Inner calmness and contentment
- Equanimity in challenging circumstances
Among the various types of yoga, there’s one that is especially excellent for deeply nourishing the mind as well as healing the body. This is restorative yoga, which we’ll look at more closely.
Restorative Yoga: A Healing Balm for Body, Mind & Spirit
What makes restorative yoga different from other styles?
One thing is its slowness and attention to detail. A majority of restorative yoga positions are on the floor. This means your entire body is supported by the ground, and it allows gravity to become your friend.
Simple yoga props like bolsters and blankets are also used to support you in finding comfort and ease within the positions.
Typically, restorative yoga positions are held for two or three minutes at least. This provides ample opportunity for you to feel your breath, explore the sensations that arise, and allow your nervous system to fully incorporate the new intelligence. It’s wonderful!
A restorative yoga practice affects your body in multiple ways:
- Deeply calms the nervous system
- Supports a healthy spine and healthy joints
- Enhances mindfulness
- Is simple and natural
- Offers great healing power
Best yet, such a practice doesn’t require a huge financial investment. A few yoga props plus your own human body-mind is all you need.
From apps like Down Dog to studios offering virtual classes, it’s become increasingly easy to find guided classes you can do at home. These allow you to respect social distancing recommendations and practice from the comfort and safety of your own home, while still receiving expert guidance and support.
The Bottom Line
An intelligent and committed restorative yoga practice will gift you with a wide variety of physical and psychological benefits. Over time, you’ll also connect more fully with an inner current of peace and joy. This will support you in responding skillfully to even the most challenging circumstances.