Yoga Poses That Will Help You Find Your Calm (When You’re Anything but Calm)
Remember when bumper-to-bumper traffic or perhaps contending with your little one’s sleep regression was your biggest headache? Aggravating everyday occurrences like those almost feel like a charming reprieve from the perpetual, low-key panic of living through a global pandemic. Thankfully, one of the easiest at-home wellness routines to adopt is also one of the most effective for managing stress and anxiety. Yup, that’s yoga.
One of many studies on the matter, recently published in the International Journal of Preventive Medicine, found that a regular hatha yoga practice (three hour-long sessions per week for a month) significantly decreased depression, anxiety, and stress for women. If a LTR with a yoga practice feels a bit untenable right now, no worries! Experts also swear by the in-the-moment, calming benefits of doing certain yoga poses, which are generally combined with controlled breathing, meditation, and relaxation.
So, the next time you’re ready to throw your iPad across the room thanks to another hour-long Zoom meeting or you can’t get a grocery delivery slot to save your life, consider trying one of these yoga poses to find some semblance of chill.
- Mountain Pose
In addition to improving posture, strengthening your thighs, knees, and ankles, firming your core, and relieving that sciatica you now have from nonstop safer-at-home sitting-on-your-butt, Mountain Pose offers far more benefits than you’d think, given that, at first glance, it admittedly looks like you’re just standing in place…wishing…waiting…hoping for normal life to start again.
- Wide-Legged Forward Bend
This moment is all about teaching all of us control freaks to let go and surrender. That’s one reason Wide-Legged Forward Bend is so appropriate and potentially helpful right now. It’s one that easily flows from Mountain Pose and is said to address headaches, fatigue, and mild depression.
- Child’s Pose
When you’re ready to throw in the towel on the day, but you look at your phone and it’s only 2:30 p.m., rest and restore with one of the most basic yoga poses, often used as a respite in the midst of rigorous vinyasa flows. Child’s Pose is said to stretch the hips and thighs, as well as ankles, calm the brain and help relieve stress and fatigue, and offer relief from that chronic pain in your neck (no, not that one friend who won’t stop texting you the most horrifying headlines, but this won’t hurt when it comes to them either).
- Legs-Up-the-Wall Pose
Think about the position you’d want to put your kid in after they have a complete meltdown. Well, it works for grown-ups too! According to Yoga Journal, this restorative pose “may have the power to cure whatever ails you,” including anxiety, arthritis, mild depression, headaches, digestive problems, insomnia, migraine, respiratory ailments, menstrual cramps, PMS, menopause, you name it. That’s a fairly big promise, but there’s a lot of power in the passive pose.
- Easy Pose
Who doesn’t need anything—literally, anything at all—to feel “easy” right now? Be forewarned that this pose isn’t a total cakewalk, especially if quarantine life has made you a couch potato. But it’s worth it, as it calms the brain, strengthens the back, and stretches the knees and ankles.
Written By: Maressa Brown