Life feels fast. Slowing down, relaxing and letting go probably seem counterintuitive to you.  

Nevertheless you long to be joyful, laid back, feel energized and be full of life. Preferably right now. So you have a coffee, some chocolate, a new pair of shoes, a glass of wine. This might work. But you know in actuality it doesn't. You still end up feeling stressed and tired. You may burnout. You have a cry and a long weekend in bed. 

Listen. Yoga (again) has the solution. 

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Supported Legs up the wall (Viparita Karani), photo source: pinterest, Recovery Yoga onto Yoga.


By willing myself to adapt, I also experienced one of the most
profound lessons of Yoga — for Yoga is about openness. - Desikachar

Happiness, positivity and a profound connection with others is much more achievable if we stand with both feet on earth, with a heartfelt perspective, receptivity and a calm, open mind. 

For this it is essential to give our ever so sensitive nervous system (that together with the endocrine system is responsible for a healthy equilibrium in our body) a break from the constant  attention grabbing and tension creating triggers.

When we physically hold tension it is pretty hard to let go of negative, distressing thoughts and emotions. And vice versa: It is impossible to release muscular tension, if we are emotionally stirred up or frozen. 

In restorative yoga the poses are held for longer so the body totally relaxes and opens up. You let what is be. Instead of trying to resist it. You hear your own breath. Feel your body, observe holding patterns and learn to simply be with it. You give yourself the chance to get in touch with your heart, your true essence.

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Supported Reclined Cobblers Pose (Badha Konsasana)


A little drowsing cat is an image of perfect beatitude. 
- Jules Champfleury



In reality our organic innocent state of being is relaxed and free. Take cats. Cats are typically very chilled. When it is time for food or play they show up with a laser sharp mind and incredible agility. And then, they relax again. They wisely restore and effectively use the abundant energy within. You can do this too. No coffee needed. 

Through the practice of restorative yoga you allow your body to surrender to gravity, get connected to the moment, to life. You super-counterpose a time-warp-like lifestyle. And through this you prevent and ease chronic stress, anxiety and depression naturally. Just like this. 

And when you really and truly let go, supported with bolsters, blankets, blocks (or maybe your sofa cushion) you allow your muscles to soften, your mind to slow-flow and simply to be you. Doesn't that sound delicious? 

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Supported backbend in Savasana

Restorative Yoga Teacher Judith Hanson Lasater made it to her annual ritual to do a one hour restorative practice every day during the Christmas and New Year holiday season. This, she says, keeps her sane when everyone else is racing around the decorated trees. What better gift for your family and friends can you think of than showing up with the flair of being truly relaxed, happy and heart-fully there?

Allow yourself to let go into the nourishing hammock of restorative yoga. 
Even, and especially in stressful times. Life will love you. 

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Supported Childs Pose (Badha Konasana)
The following sequence is excellent in preparation to a joyful evening after a busy day at work or simply to take a break throughout the day. You may even start your day like this. It will set you up energised and refreshed. 

RECHARGE YOUR BATTERIES in 20 MINUTES 
(sequence as photos in this post, excl. no. 5 Savasana)

  1. Legs up the wall (Viparita Karani) - 5 min
  2. Supported Cobblers pose (Supta Badha Konasana) - 5 min
  3. Supported backbend in Savasana - 5 min
  4. Supported Childspose (Balasana) - 5 min change head position after 2.5 min. 
  5. Savasana

Find out more about restorative yoga: 

 


Hendrik
01/05/2013 2:59am

Hi,

would like to learn yoga!! Cool stuff Alexa!!
Happy New Year!!

Greetings from Hamburg

Hendrik

Reply



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