Yoga Poses to Relax Before Bed
In our current day, it can seem like you’re all always on to go. It’s become all too easy to get lost in your daily tasks before getting into bed after a long day. However, many of us often forget how important it is for our mental health to take time to relax before settling in to catch up on sleep.
Luckily, there are several ways that you can signal to your body that it’s time to relax and take a break, like staying away from your phone before bed, reading a book, or even doing some relaxing yoga.
To some, the idea of yoga before bed seems unrealistic—they believe they aren’t flexible, or that yoga may just not be for them. However, there are some simple yoga movements that almost every type of body can do to relax and get ready for a peaceful night of sleep.
Practicing yoga is one of our tips for better sleep. Interested in taking up pre-bedtime yoga? Here are some of the best yoga poses to help you relax before heading to bed...
1. Standing Half Forward Wall Bend (Ardha Uttanasana)
The standing half forward wall bend is a fantastic yoga move to stimulate your organs to aid in digestion and can help your body get ready to rest and relax.
To perform this move, stand around a foot away from the wall and bend over halfway, pressing your palms into the wall. If the standing half forward wall bend feels simple, a standing forward bend (Uttanasana) is a great modification to challenge your body more. To perform this pose, follow the same steps as the half-forward wall bend but move away from the wall and hold your elbows, allowing your spine to lengthen as you relax towards the floor.
2. Seated Spinal Twist (Ardha Matsyendrasana)
Working at a desk all day? The seated spinal twist is a relaxing yoga move that helps expand the rib cage and relax your spine. Performing the seated spinal twist can help provide your back with some much-needed relief after a day of hard work.
To do a seated spinal twist, you should sit on the ground with your right leg straight in front of you and the left crossed over it upright. Take your right arm and cross it over your left knee, twisting to the left side as you inhale and exhale. Be sure to do both sides, and focus on your breathing to get the maximum benefit out of this stretch.
3. Three-part Breath (Dirga Pranayama)
The three-part breath is a fantastic move to focus your attention and ground your body at the beginning or end of your yoga session. his yoga move is predominantly mental and can help you practice mindfulness with your body after a long day of work.
To do a three-part breath, you should first sit or lie down in a comfortable position. Close your eyes, and focus on your breathing as you inhale and exhale. Repeat this as many times as you would like until you are feeling relaxed and centered.
4. Cat and Cow Pose (Marjaryasana and Bitilasana)
The cat and cow pose is a yoga stape to help ease back pain and center the body. It stretches both the back and flank muscles and is a great move for anyone experiencing tension in the lower back.
To perform the cat and cow pose, first, get into a tabletop position with your palms on the floor and knees approximately hip-width apart. Arch your spine to bring your tailbone towards the ground to perform the “cow” pose. Then, inhale and hollow your spine to bring the tailbone towards the sky (the “cat” pose). Repeat this as many times as necessary, focusing on your breathing to help you relax.
Yoga is one of the best relaxation methods to get your mind and body ready for a peaceful night of rest. To ensure you get the most out of your eight hours, it’s also important to ensure you are sleeping on comfortable sheets and a quality mattress that will leave you feeling rejuvenated and ready to take on the day.
Looking for more great yoga poses to do before bed? Check out the infographic from Casper below to learn 12 more fantastic poses to help you feel relaxed before catching some zzz’s...