Depression can be a tricky and painful thing to manage. Luckily, there are a variety of ancient techniques to help. One such technique is yoga, which has been used for numerous physical and mental health benefits for thousands of years. Even though yoga is a physical activity, its mental benefits are often just as great, if not greater. This is because yoga focuses both on movement and breathing, serving as an engaging way to tap into the power of breath and meditation as a coping mechanism for managing depression and anxiety.
Halasana, or plow pose, is a great pose to start your yoga practice. It gets your blood circulating and helps to regulate the breath. It also stretches the spine and helps to stimulate the abdominal organs, helping to calm and relax your body in preparation for further poses.
Adho Mukha Svanasana
Adho Mukha Svanasana, or downward facing dog, is one of the most popular yoga poses and a great way to counteract feelings of depression and anxiety. It stretches the spine, legs and arms and helps to improve posture, which can be a great help for anyone feeling low. As with all poses, this one is best practiced with focused breathing. Be sure to focus on your breath as much as your form and enjoy the feeling of releasing stagnant energy from your entire body.
Balasana, or child’s pose, is a great pose for calming and restoring the nervous system. With knees spread wider than hip-width apart, this pose helps to bring space and breath to the lower back, which can help to counteract symptoms like fatigue. As you focus on your breath in this position, consciously try and visualize energy flowing through your entire body.
Upavistha Konasana, or seated wide angle pose, can help to counter feelings of depression and anxiety as much as any of the other poses. This pose helps to open up the thighs, hips and groin, bringing blood, oxygen and energy to the region, which can help to restore the body on a physical and mental level.
Viparita Karani, or legs-up-the-wall pose, is a great calming pose that helps to restore the body. It is a great way to counter the effects of standing poses, like downward facing dog, and can help to relax and balance the body’s stress hormones. It is also a great pose for counteracting the energy restrictions of depression, helping to open up the energy pathways in the body.
Savasana, or corpse pose, is great for restoring the body and calming the nervous system. The goal of this pose is to surrender the body and be aware of the breath without actively attempting to change it – focus on breathing naturally without forcing it. This helps to restore the body and clear the mind of any worries and stresses.
Ultimately, yoga can be a great help for those struggling with depression and anxiety. In the same way that physical exercises can help to boost energy and combat