Yoga Nidra for Sleep: Does It Work?

Need to crush it on the gymnasium, within the workplace, and at house? Begin with an excellent evening’s sleep. Relaxation is essential for total well being and well-being in any respect levels of life. With one in three adults reporting “poor” or “honest” sleep, many are exploring yoga nidra to have extra restful nights.

Having been recorded way back to the seventh century AD, “yogic sleep” has loads of advantages — like probably higher relaxation, stress administration, and a wholesome temper. However “yoga nidra will not be an alternative to sleep,” says yoga nidra teacher Karen Brody.

It’s additionally not yoga. “Yoga nidra is a sleep-based meditation follow and a type of consciousness,” she explains.

Learn on to find out about guided meditation for sleep, the best way to get began, what it will possibly do for you — and why you continue to want a minimum of seven hours of shuteye.

What Is Yoga Nidra?

Woman Does Yoga Nidra on Mat | Yoga Nidra for Sleep

Yoga nidra is a yogic meditation follow whose purpose is a steadiness between rest and consciousness that brings you to the third of 4 ranges of consciousness. Within the context of sleep, that is the deepest stage of non-REM (speedy eye motion) sleep.

“Yoga nidra is a way to entry a state of deep rest for each the thoughts and physique, the place consciousness stays awake and conscious,” says Tracee Stanley, creator of Radiant Relaxation: Yoga Nidra for Deep Leisure and Woke up Readability and a yoga nidra facilitator and practitioner for over 20 years.

In a typical yoga nidra follow, you lie in your again in savasana whereas an teacher guides you thru a visualization designed to maintain you hovering between sleep and wakefulness. Whilst you may drift off, that’s not the purpose.

“The largest false impression is that yoga nidra is a yoga nap,” provides Stanley. “Throughout sleep, you aren’t conscious. You don’t bear in mind what occurred once you have been asleep. Within the state of yoga nidra, you stay acutely aware within the liminal areas between sleep and wakefulness.”

How Does Yoga Nidra Work?

Yoga nidra helps you decelerate and chill out, shifting your physique into “relaxation and digest” mode and turning on the parasympathetic nervous system.

The follow shifts you into “a peaceable and blissful state referred to as samadhi,” Stanley says. “Yoga nidra is the nurturing side of nature that welcomes repose, relaxation, and being held unconditionally,” she explains.

That sounds, effectively, blissful, however does yoga nidra actually work? Analysis has confirmed important variations in delta mind waves after solely two weeks of a yoga nidra follow. Delta waves are related to the deepest ranges of rest.

We’ll dive into different advantages afterward.

However as for claims that yoga nidra can offset a poor evening’s sleep or in some way exchange sleep? No method, says psychotherapist Niloufar Esmaeilpour, who holds a grasp’s in scientific psychology.

“Assuming that practices like yoga nidra can exchange sleep is dangerous as a result of sleep entails essential organic processes, together with mobile restore, toxin clearance from the mind, and reminiscence consolidation, which can’t be replicated by meditation or rest strategies,” she says.

Brody provides, “it will possibly assist individuals who’ve sleep points go to sleep or get again to sleep. A superb evening’s sleep takes you from waking to goals to deep sleep.” Yoga nidra does all that and takes you right into a “state of consciousness that can not be accessed by standard sleep.”

How Does Yoga Nidra Differ From Meditation?

Two Women Meditating Side by Side | Yoga Nidra for Sleep

Whereas each yoga nidra and meditation supply guided routes to rest, they differ in a lot of methods. For starters, you’re usually seated throughout standard meditation, whereas the customary physique place for yoga nidra is corpse pose (savasana).

The 2 practices additionally emphasize completely different levels of consciousness. In meditation, “you both comply with your breath or a mantra while you’re awake,” Brody explains, in contrast to the sleep-wake-dream-bliss journey of yoga nidra, which reaches deeper ranges of rest.

However it’s undoubtedly not a contest: Each yoga nidra and meditation supply ample advantages for thoughts and physique. And who couldn’t use some down time away from screens and work?

The right way to Do Yoga Nidra

Training yoga nidra for sleep is easy. You’ll find an in-person or on-line class, or obtain a yoga nidra meditation on-line. (BODi’s Sound Meditation program contains practices particularly for sleep.)

Discover a snug spot to lie down — on a yoga mat, in mattress, on the sofa, and even in your automotive. If want be, you possibly can even sit.

When you’re cozy, flip in your guided meditation. You may need to cowl your physique with a blanket, placed on an eye fixed masks, and/or put on headphones. Then, tune out the actual world as you tune in to yoga nidra. You possibly can follow yoga nidra any time of day or evening, and periods can final from quarter-hour to an hour or extra.

Yoga Nidra Advantages

Listed here are a number of the science-backed advantages of yoga nidra:

1. A lift of mindfulness

Well being staff experiencing each bodily and psychological exhaustion underwent an eight-week guided yoga nidra program and confirmed “important enchancment” in mindfulness.

2. Much less stress, improved vanity

A gaggle of college college students was administered one other eight-week yoga nidra routine consisting of twice-weekly, one-hour periods. The end result was a major lower in stress depth ranges and elevated vanity scores in contrast with a management group.

3. Higher REM and non-REM sleep

Amongst sufferers with power insomnia who underwent a yoga nidra intervention, sleep high quality and effectivity improved considerably, even in comparison with cognitive behavioral remedy.

What’s not on the checklist of advantages? Swapping in yoga nidra for sleep, regardless of what you may see on social media. Make yoga nidra a part of your rest routine — however be sure you prioritize the remainder you deserve each evening, too.

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