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5 Effective Yoga Poses That Will Induce Sleep

Yoga poses help induce sleep. (Photo via Pexels/KoolShooters)
Yoga poses help induce sleep. (Photo via Pexels/KoolShooters)

Sleep deprivation can be dangerous to your overall physical and mental health. It can make you lethargic the next day, and slow down your bodily and mental functions as well. Even several studies suggest that lack of sleep can increase your chances of anxiety, depression, high blood pressure, skin aging, and other illnesses.

Well, if you want to induce sleep, the best thing you can do is practice yoga.

Yoga is one such safe and natural practice that helps relax your mind and improve your sleeping pattern. Practicing certain poses regularly not only works on your mental health problems but also builds confidence, calms the mind, and eases stress and anxiety, thereby gradually eliminating all the factors that affect sleep.

5 yoga poses to induce sleep

Practice the following poses daily to see great improvements in the quality of your sleep. Remember to breathe easily in each pose and perform the movements slowly and with control.

1. Butterfly pose (Bandha Konasana)

The butterfly pose in yoga is a great asana to calm your mind and prepare your body for a good night's sleep. This pose stretches the inner thighs, hips, knees and groins, and helps unwind for ultimate relaxation.

To do this pose:

  • Sit on a mat. Spread your knees out and allow the soles of your feet to touch one another.
  • Grab the thumb of your feet with both hands and ensure that the soles remain touched throughout the pose.
  • Once you are comfortable and stable, lengthen your torso and move your shoulders back. Breathe easily and hold the posture for as long as you can. For a deeper stretch, press your knees down using your elbows.

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2. Head to knee pose (Janu Sirasana)

This restorative yoga pose gently stretches your core muscles and back and helps ease the pain in the back, neck and shoulders. It improves sleep and also alleviates digestive functions.

To do this pose:

  • Sit straight with your legs extended in front of you. Bend your left knee out so that your hips get opened and then bring the bottom of your left foot towards your right thigh.
  • Slowly bend your torso towards your leg while keeping your neck and back long. Stretch your hands on either side of your right leg and take deep breaths in this position.
  • Sit up straight and now, repeat the exercise on the opposite side.

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3. Knee-to-chest pose (Apanasana)

The knee-to-chest pose in yoga boosts blood circulation and helps relax the body and mind. It gently stretches the spine, thereby relieving back pain and discomfort.

To do this pose:

  • Lie on a mat on your back and keep your arms extended to your sides.
  • Bend your legs and move your knees towards your chest. Grab your hands around your knees and hug your legs tightly.
  • Bring your shoulder blades down and focus on keeping your spine lengthened. Maintain this position for a few seconds or simply start to swing back and forth and then side to side.
  • Breathe normally throughout the pose.

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4. Legs up the wall (Viparita Karani)

Legs up the wall ease pressure and pain off your feet and legs and is a great asana to relax after a long, hectic day. For an added benefit, keep your eyes closed at all times.

To do this pose:

  • Lie on a mat with your face up and your body perpendicular to a wall. Slowly lift your legs and move your hips as close to the wall as you can.
  • Move your legs up the wall while keeping your legs slightly bent. Position your hands on the sides or keep them on your belly or chest.
  • Stay in the posture for as long as you want.

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5. Forward fold (Uttanasana)

This is a great forward-folding asana that gently stretches your back body. Uttanasana aims to prevent strain in your shoulders, neck and back and relaxes your body.

To do this pose:

  • Take a standing position with your feet at a hip distance. Lift your arms over your head and slowly bend your body forward at your hips.
  • Keeping your knees slightly bent, allow your torso to rest on your thighs. Wrap your arms around your shins and hold the position for a few counts.

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Takeaway

Practice these poses consistently for a few days to sleep faster, longer and better.

The aforementioned yoga asanas, along with deep breathing, will potentially help your body get into a state of relaxation and allow you to let go of stress and tension. If you are a yoga beginner, however, go slow and focus on your form to avoid injuries.

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Edited by Ruby Khanna
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