Insomnia? Six minutes of yoga can help you

We are presenting a series of positions that in a few minutes a day will help you to have a good night's sleep. It is a translation of CNN Mexico of the original interview with Dana Santas published March 26 in the web of CNN.

Dana Santas

Dana Santas is the creator of RADIUS Yoga Conditioning, a style of yoga designed for athletes to move, breathe and concentrate better. It is the trainer of yoga of the Atlanta Braves, Philadelphia Phillies and the Tampa Bay Rays buccaneers, the Tampa Bay Lightning, Orlando Magic and dozens of professionals from the National League of soccer, the NBA and major league baseball.

CNN: sometimes sleep eludes us...

Dana: Maybe our brain does not stop, or we're taking turns all night without being able to be comfortable. What ever the reason for lack of sleep, wreaking havoc.

There are many studies on the relationship between lack of sleep with the increase in the risk of serious health problems such as diabetes, heart attack, depression, altered judgement lapses in memory and other cognitive impairments.

Fortunately, there are a few simple techniques based on yoga which can be used at night to sleep and stay asleep. They are needed only six minutes to start up our body's natural processes that facilitate sleep.

These are the same stretching, methods of breathing and meditation that my clients, professional athletes use. As trainer of yoga's numerous sports teams, it is my job to help athletes to restore their bodies and minds so they perform at optimal levels.

This includes creating programs to help fall asleep and counter the devastating effects of games and travel schedules, to make the players feel fresh and ready.

I have designed this six-step program effective and affordable for the majority of people, not just for athletes.

It starts with two positions carried out on one side of the bed to deal with the stress that accumulates during the day, particularly in the low back and hip flexors. Stretch and realign these zones, you can prevent to wake up in the night by feel numb or painful.

Functional squat

For stretching the spine and back, re-align the pelvis and hip.

Stand with feet apart, arms extended to the height of the shoulders and hip width, exhale and performs a deep squat. Keep your weight on your heels. Prevents your knees or feet to look outward. If you have difficulty performing a squat without lifting your heels or feel that you fall, used sure thing as the headboard of the bed and lean.

Breathe long and deep three times while you're in the squat. Concentrate on relaxing your lower back after each exhalation.

If you feel discomfort in the ankle, knee or Shin, tries to make broader your squat and make sure that you are taking back the hips rather than pushing them forward with your knees.

The warrior with a tilt to one side

For lengthen the twins of the pantarrillas flexors and side waist muscles.

Standing, it gives a step back with your right foot by placing the fingers of the feet facing slightly outwards. Flexing your knee to align with your ankle. Keep your back leg straight. Put your left hand on your left hip. If you have problems with balance, put your left hand on the bed or other support instead of the hip.

Inhale as you rise the right arm over your head and extend it to the left, stretching all your right side and front of the hip. Exhale and hold the position. Inhale and lower the arm to the side. Return to standing position. Repeat on the opposite side and get into bed.

Already in bed, practice a slight torque to promote blood flow in the abdomen and stimulate the parasympathetic nervous system, also known by its "rest and Digest" function of our autonomic nervous system, which lowers heart rate and blood pressure and inhibits the production of stress hormones.

Torque with knees bent

For stretch hips and low back muscles, increase blood flow to the pelvis and abdomen, improving the mobility of the upper back and open the chest.

You lay face up with legs extended and arms at the sides. Put a pillow under your head, if you prefer. It hugs the left thigh toward your chest. Inhale to put your right hand on the outside of your left thigh and stretched his left arm to the left. Exhale completely while turning back to lead the left knee to the right.

He breathes deeply twice. Rest and repeat on the other side.

When using the deep diaphragmatic breathing, It helps the restorative action of the parasympathetic system. And because the diaphragm also functions as a postural muscle, being attached to the ribs and lower back through the flexors of the hip, diaphragmatic breathing promotes the position of the rib cage, back and pelvis, which decreases the chance of waking up due to discomfort or need to change position.

Join the breath deep with the concentration of counting backwards, it is a simple but effective concentrate and relax a divagante mind.

Breathe with the diaphragm and meditate counting backwards

Make yourself comfortable with the head in a pillow and another pillow under your knees. If you prefer to be on side, lie down on the left side with a pillow between your legs.

Close your eyes. Inhale through the nose, filling the lower part of lungs and the back side of your rib cage. You should feel that the lower ribs expand outward, not that inflates your chest.

Exhale and concentrate on your lower ribs internally rotating and descending. It is important that you feel the rib cage down to ensure the optimal performance of the diaphragm. A complete exhalation is needed to raise the levels of carbon dioxide in the blood, enough to inspire a functional natural inhalation.

When you create that you exhalaste all the air, it contracts the abdominal muscles to see if you can push the remaining air. Surely you'll find a little! Once you've exhaled completely, pause before using.

Attempts to extend and deepen your breath with this pattern: breathe in 5. Exhale in 5, pause 2 after you exhale.

Once you've established a pattern of breathing, begin to count your breaths back from 20 up to 1. It focuses your mind on the image of each number and the sensations of your breath. If still not you've slept after 20 breaths (approximately three to four minutes), repeat the process, starting with 30 or 40 breaths.

Practice this six minute yoga program before you go to bed should lead to a quality rest, creating a physical basis (muscle relaxation and body position) and physiological (diaphragmatic breathing and parasympathetic nervous system) best to fall asleep and stay asleep.

Sweet dreams.

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By • 7 Apr, 2015 • section: Asanas, Practice, Bless you