Restorative Yoga is the perfect antidote to the headlong dash that is living in the 21st century. Good for body and mind, the following are 5 of the amazing benefits you’ll enjoy if you practice the art of Restorative Yoga.
One of the best things about the art of Restorative Yoga is the incredible way it increases the flexibility of the body. But it does it in a way that involves very limited muscular contractions, making it suitable for anyone of any age, and also for those with various physical limitations.
It’s a common misconception that you need to work your muscles hard to increase their flexibility. And whilst this is true to a certain degree, it’s far more beneficial to open the parts of the body that are tight by gentle stretching combined with relaxation. This means that any tension in the muscles can be slowly released.
Using the power of Restorative Yoga for flexibility is something that anyone can easily learn to practice.
Be honest. How often can you say that you’re totally relaxed? In our rush to get through the ever more time constrained hours of the day, we more often than not end up a frazzled mess. And when the weekend finally arrives, you feel so obligated not to waste it sleeping and relaxing that you end up cramming in so much that you’re even more exhausted come Sunday night.
Mastering the art of Restorative Yoga helps us attain true relaxation. Plus, and this is key here, you won’t need to find a huge amount of time in your busy schedule to fit it in. Learning how to truly allow your body to relax is hugely beneficial to both your physical and mental health. And in addition, the true relaxation state you reach means that when you are working, playing, and simply living your crazy life, you’ll be much more productive too.
3. Reduces anxiety and stress
One of the biggest causes of illness – both mental and physical – is stress. And the nasty thing about stress (and anxiety, as both tend to go hand in hand) is that it creeps up on you without you being aware of it. Sure, a little bit of stress can be a good thing, but when this becomes too much and/or too regular an occurrence, it has a severely detrimental effect on the body.
Both stress and anxiety cause the body to release the so-called ‘stress hormones’, adrenaline and cortisol. Too much of these can see both mind and body suffer.
Restorative Yoga has an enormous capacity to heal both the physical and mental effects of anxiety and stress on the body.
4. Balances and enhances your moods
Once again, the stresses of modern day life can have a debilitating effect on your moods. No one wants wild mood swings, and one of the great benefits of Restorative Yoga is that it really does help to stabilize and enhance your mood throughout the day.
The thing is, when we live a fast-paced life, our mind also races at a million miles an hour. This simply isn’t healthy and has repercussions throughout the body – one of the most noticeable being on your brain and mood. When the brain is ‘stressed’, issues such as the uptake of the hormone, serotonin, is affected. When the regular supply of this hormone is interrupted, it causes your moods to lower, and/or to swing far more than normal.
In addition, it’s known that an imbalance in the correct uptake of serotonin to the brain is a major cause of depression.
5. Boosts the immune system
Restorative Yoga has the added advantage of boosting the immune system. The relaxation that the practice helps the body achieve is truly beneficial to the production of white blood cells that fight off all types of infection.
Another plus point of Restorative Yoga is that it can help the body fight a current chronic or acute illness, injury, or disease. And because it’s easy to undertake even if you’re chair or bed bound, it can be done by anyone, anywhere, no matter how ill you might be feeling.
All of the above benefits occur when you allow the mind and body to truly relax. This allows all the systems of the body to begin to ‘reset’, and to once again work in the harmonious manner that they’re meant to for good physical and mental health.
As well as this, we allow our mind to process information, creating space for other, important aspects that we need to fully function as a human being. This includes the ability to once again get in touch with who we are, bringing our natural qualities to the fore, and become more tolerant and compassionate to both ourselves and others.