What are the benefits of practicing yoga before going to sleep?
Benefits of yoga nidra include:
● Better sleep. Yoga nidra is meant to be done right before going to bed to calm your mind and body and get you into a state in between sleep and consciousness. Research shows that this practice helps with the treatment of chronic insomnia.
● Stress reduction. Like most yoga practices, yoga nidra is meant to move your focus away from all the negative stressors in your life and help you be mindful of your mental and physical well-being.
● Increase in dopamine levels. Dopamine is the feel-good hormone that your body releases. This study shows that practicing yoga nidra increases these hormone levels. Dopamine relates to feelings of bliss and motivation, along with functions like movement, sleep, and learning.
● Increase in creativity and intuition. Practicing yoga before bed increases the alpha and beta brainwave activity, leading to easier access to dreamlike theta states associated with openness, creativity, and self-connection.
● Helps with a variety of physical ailments. Any yoga practice is beneficial to improve strength, balance, and flexibility. Yoga nidra is most effective in alleviating symptoms of chronic conditions like back pain, rheumatoid arthritis, and type 2 diabetes.
Yoga nidra is a great practice for anyone—young or old, beginner or expert—to partake in. If you have more questions about healthy sleep practices or you have a hard time sleeping, schedule a visit with a St. Luke’s Health sleep medicine practitioner or a Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Group primary care physician.
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