What Is Yoga Nidra? 10 Steps to practice

What Is Yoga Nidra

Modern yoga Nidra is a meditative state between waking up and falling asleep.

The Upanishads and the Mahabharata describe a state termed “Yoga Nidra,” but it does not provide any foundation for the present approach.

“Proprioceptive relaxation,” as described by practitioners like Annie Payson Call and Edmund Jacobson in the 19th and 20th centuries, is the source of this.”

Developed by Dennis Boyes in 1973, popularized by Satyananda Saraswati in 1976, and later by Swami Rama, Richard Miller, and others, the present version of the method has spread around the globe.

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is treated using this method by the US Army. There is just a little amount of scientific data to support the theory that this practice effectively reduces stress.

What Is Yoga Nidra

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How Yoga Nidra differs from meditation

Yoga Nidra is a method of calming the mind and body. The same is true of meditation. Despite what some people believe, these are two different activities.

Judi Bari, a yoga therapist, and program manager describes yoga Nidra as “like meditation, but it’s not.” “There are certain similarities, but there are also significant variances.

It is important to remember that yoga Nidra is practiced while lying down, and the objective is to achieve a profound level of conscious awareness of sleep.

This condition comprises a transition from waking awareness to dreaming, and then back to waking consciousness while still dreaming.” Bar describes this as a guided meditation, but he emphasizes that it is very regimented.

With meditation, you’re sat and awake, but your mind is focused, letting ideas come and go. Meditation allows us to enter the theta state, which is the stage before delta sleep, the deepest stage of sleep.

Deep healing may take place in the delta trough. That’s the goal of our yoga Nidra session: to reach that place. this stage, the body, and mind are at rest, and the conscious mind is awake,” he says. ”

What Is Yoga Nidra

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Yoga Nidra Benefits

The bar claims that yoga Nidra affects the autonomic nervous system, so he recommends it. The autonomic nerve system (ANS) is responsible for controlling bodily functions that occur automatically (heartbeat, breathing, digestion, and blood flow).

The sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems are also part of this system.
According to Bar, the sympathetic nervous system, which regulates our fight-or-flight reaction, may be calmed by meditation.

The parasympathetic nervous system is activated more by a meditation practice that helps relax the sympathetic nervous system.

Immunity, digestive health, and stress management benefit from a well-balanced diet. However, this deeper relaxation activates the pineal gland, which produces the melatonin hormone.

Melatonin is a potent antioxidant that might help you sleep better. As a result, it may help regulate immunological function, blood pressure, cortisol levels and produce a good night’s sleep.

Meditation and Yoga Nidra have been shown to reduce stress and anxiety in studies, although yoga Nidra was more effective in doing so.

Anxiety symptoms, both cognitive and physiological, may be alleviated by practicing yoga Nidra.

Yoga Nidra: 10 Steps to practice

Yoga Nidra is available at certain yoga studios, but it may also be done at home with YouTube or a meditation app.

You don’t even need a lot of expensive gear. With a bolster or cushion in place, you may lay on your back with your lower back, spine, and head supported by a yoga mat or blanket.

Put a cushion or a blanket beneath your knees if you want.

Yoga Nidra has ten phases, according to Bar. In Richard Miller’s “10 Stages of Yoga Nidra,” he explains these processes.

1. Tune in to your heart’s desires.

Keep your eye on a long-term objective or anything that has a bearing on your overall health. Imagine yourself completing this objective and feeling its ecstatic satisfaction in your mind’s eye.

2. Have a goal in mind.

Yoga Nidra is a wonderful way to come in touch with your inner self, but remember why you’re doing it in the first place.

3. Tap your inner resource.

This is done by finding a place in your body where you feel comfortable and at peace and then practicing.

4. Check your body.

In a body scan, you will be asked to pay attention to various body sections. This is meant to help you unwind and de-stress.

5. Be attentive to your breath.

Keep an eye on the amount of air entering and leaving your lungs. Notice how it enters your lungs and how your abdomen moves. You’ll be able to take your time and take deep breaths.

6. Embrace your emotions.

If you have a bad day, accept it and move on. To keep things in perspective, it’s not necessary to disregard difficult situations. You may also consider the polar opposite of what you’re experiencing by acknowledging them.

7. Observe your ideas.

Observing your thoughts in the present time without judging or attempting to filter them out is similar to step six. If you find yourself dwelling on any self-loathing ideas, try to see the bright side of things to relieve stress.

8. Embrace happiness.

If you feel euphoric, allow yourself to be enveloped by it.

9. Pay attention to your “self.”

Keep an eye on your own personality and how you’re feeling. Alternatively, your “I-ness.” As a result, you should treat yourself as an onlooker. You’ll be more awake and in touch with your sensations if you do this.

10. Evaluate your work.

After your session is over, take some time to reflect on how you felt and what you were able to access. Finally, consider how you may incorporate the serenity or pleasure you are experiencing into your regular life, regardless of how wonderful or awful things are going.

Slow down and enjoy the process. Spend a few minutes getting yourself back to a normal level of consciousness.

What Is Yoga Nidra

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Other yoga Nidra suggestions

You still need to practice yoga Nidra, even if you think it’s simpler than regular yoga since you’re not accustomed to meditating or quieting your mind.

Practicing away from other people’s presence and in a dimly lit room are two of her suggestions. If necessary, you may block out light using a sleep mask.

Bar advises covering yourself with a blanket to keep the body from cooling down.

Yoga Nidra may be practiced in a chair or even in bed if laying on the floor is too uncomfortable for you. Start with a shorter amount of time.

Work your way up from 15 to 20 minutes at a time. When it comes to yoga Nidra, you don’t have to perform it during the daytime hours. You may get a better night’s sleep if you do some meditation before bed.

Don’t give up if you have a hard time during your first session. It’s far more difficult than you may imagine to sit there and do nothing.

Try a few sessions of yoga, Nidra. It won’t take you long to get the hang of it, particularly when your body and mind desperately need recuperation.

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