4 min read

Yoga Nidra Sleep

In this day and age where we are living fast lives that we forget to take care of ourselves, having trouble falling and stay asleep is becoming a bigger and bigger issue worldwide. The same goes for not getting enough sleep during the night.

Quality sleep can be a daily obstacle for many working professionals, yet sleep quality is essential for every aspect of our health and well-being. Fortunately, there appear to be a solution, the ancient practice of Yoga Nidra offers a simple solution. If you are one of the many people who lie wide awake at night, this article is for you.

two women learning yoga nidra for sleep

Lying in a bed or on a mat on the floor, Yoga Nidra also known as yogic sleep, is a form of ancient self-care. A teacher or recording will guide it's practitioner through several yogic practices to bring them into a state of deep relaxation with their soothing voice. Renowned author, guru, and Yoga Nidra teacher, Swami Satyananda Saraswati refer to this state as "reaching the border between waking and sleeping states."

This is a restorative practice that aids in healing the whole body by resetting the nervous system. In addition, it can support improved sleep quality and cycle. Allow us at Anahana to teach you five ways that sleep meditation is an accessible, effective, and beneficial solution to relaxing the mind and help you to achieve better sleep. Continue to read below.

 

Yoga Nidra Improves Sleep Patterns and Helps Chronic Insomnia

The lack of sleep contributes to many stresses, including depression, anxiety, a weakened immune system, and the feeling of burnout. Adults need at least seven hours of rest a night to be in their best state of health and wellbeing. However, only 30% of Americans actually attain this amount.

Incorporating Yoga Nidra into your nightly routine will help you fall asleep quicker and stay asleep longer. It slows the brain waves in your mind through breath awareness and body scan exercises to put you into a sleep-like state. These exercises help trigger the relaxation response, which calms the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems to prepare your body for yogic sleep. The guided meditation teaches the mind and body the relaxation process to prepare you for bed, helping you obtain a very deep sleep, eliminating sleep deprivation.

 

How a Yoga Nidra Session Calms your Mind

Similar to meditation, the practice of Yoga Nidra involves exercises that help you detach from your mind. As you enter the natural resting state, your brain will quiet. Thoughts will run through your head, and you will learn to recognize that they are simply thoughts and return your focus to your body and breath. Letting go of your worries helps you to develop deeper self-awareness. You can carry this newfound mindfulness into your daily life. By detaching from your thoughts during a Yoga Nidra session, you can leave the session feeling well-rested and refreshed.

 

Yoga Nidra Reduces Tension and Pain

Yoga Nidra teaches you to become aware of the sensations in your body. This helps you to recognize any lingering stress that you are experiencing so that you can release the tension. Sleep meditation improves emotional self-regulation, ultimately reducing depression, stress, and anxiety levels.

In addition to providing mental relaxation for improved wellbeing, practicing Yoga Nidra is an effective treatment for chronic pain. It puts you into a state of deep relaxation while focusing your attention. This allows you to experience a sense of the calmness and inner peace that is already present within your body. Here, you can view the discomfort from a different perspective and learn to understand it rather than to resist it.

The U.S. Army Surgeon General endorsed Yoga Nidra as an innovative approach to pain management and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in military care. It relieves suffering that medication cannot and reduces the intensity of existing discomfort. This helps you perform daily activities, including sleep, without the interference of pain.

 

Yoga Nidra Releases dopamine

Yoga Nidra releases the natural feel-good hormone dopamine. This fact is supported by a 2002 study that found participants who took part in Yoga Nidra had an increased level of the hormone during practice. Dopamine plays a vital role in how happy we feel and allows us to experience increased feelings of motivation and joy. It is also responsible for other body functions, including memory, mood, learning, movement, concentration, attention, and sleep. The increase in dopamine will relax the whole body and mind, preparing you to fall asleep.

 

Yoga Nidra Connects you with yourself

By relieving stress and worry, practicing Yoga Nidra creates more space in your head. This opens up a window to connect the mind, body, and spirit. You can manifest this connection by setting an intention, called a Sankalpa, that you are working toward during Yoga Nidra practice. This might be letting go of negative thoughts or being more present. Your Sankalpa will be repeated and revisited throughout the meditation practice, always in the present tense. Whatever your Sankalpa may be, learning about yourself through the reflective and restful experience will help you understand why you react the way you do in different situations. This newfound awareness will allow you to release unwanted thoughts and connect with your consciousness. This will help you break bad habits and open you up to many more potential benefits.

 

Pro tip: Practice Yoga Nidra for sleep before going to bed to help you fall asleep faster and reach a deep state of rest for longer.

woman sleeping on the floor

Yoga Nidra offers extensive health benefits, even if only practiced for a few minutes a day. It is a sleep science practice that is guaranteed to help you improve your sleep quality. Research shows that a thirty to forty-five minute Yoga Nidra session is just as beneficial as two to four hours of sleep.

A healthy sleep cycle is crucial for your wellbeing, and Yoga Nidra is one of the most effective and accessible methods to achieve this goal. It enhances sleep by relaxing the mind and body while promoting inner peace. By improving your sleep cycle, detaching you from your thoughts, reducing pain, releasing dopamine, and connecting you with yourself, you can improve your health and wellbeing. A relaxed mind is the first step to a stronger sleep cycle, and Yoga Nidra can help get you there.

What are you waiting for? Practice Yoga Nidra for sleep today and begin your journey to better sleep. Read Yoga Nidra for Beginners for a complete Yoga Nidra guide to help you get started.

 

Disclaimer

As with any type of exercise, yoga does not come without its own risks. Practicing yoga should be done with care and respect, reducing the risk of injury.

If you are suffering from any medical conditions or are unsure which type of yoga or exercise is best suited for you and your conditions, we advise you to consult a medical professional or your doctor.

Anahana Yoga Nidra Resources

 

Yoga Nidra Wikis

Yoga Nidra

Yoga Nidra Script

Yoga Nidra FAQs

Yoga Nidra for Sleep

Yoga Nidra Benefits


 

Yoga Nidra Blogs

What is Yoga Nidra

Yoga Nidra for Beginners

Yoga Nidra Sleep

Benefits of Yoga Nidra


 

Resources

Dopamine: What It Is & What It Does

CDC - Data and Statistics - Sleep and Sleep Disorders

Increased dopamine tone during meditation-induced change of consciousness

The Impact of Yoga Nidra and Seated Meditation on the Mental Health of College Professors

The State of Sleep Health in America

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