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February 11, 2020 | Farah Jassawalla

Feeling down lately? Try these yoga poses

There are days when everything becomes difficult all of a sudden. You feel down and out. Usual household chores aside, things that you normally loved doing now seem impossible. Add to that, you feel anxious all the time, and you forget things and tasks that have been lined up. When your brain seems scattered, and you feel overwhelmed, it is time for you to take charge and do something about this.
They say that regular exercise can lift your mood. But how true is it? According to experts, it does have a lot of effect on your mood. So if you’re feeling down lately, you must try these yoga poses to help yourself out of the blues. 

Relax:

We often underestimate the power of just sitting comfortably. Just sitting somewhere can calm your nerves and relax your body. Start by sitting on a sofa or the floor for five to ten breaths. Just be very still. You'll see that this little activity will distract you from the anxiety, and it will reset your energy.

Balance your breathing:

You can bring your emotions under control by trying to balance your breathing. Begin by sitting down somewhere. Breathe in and out for a count of four seconds. Repeat this routine for ten minutes, maintaining the number of times you breathe in and out. This will help you increase focus on the present moment and calm the body and mind. 

Repeat a mantra:

More often than not, you have goals that you would like to accomplish. Experts say it is important that you assign a word to whatever it is that you’re trying to accomplish and then just keep repeating this mantra silently in your mind over and over again. Doing this will fill you up with a sense of purpose and will surely decrease anxiety. 
 
Child’s Pose:
 
Sometimes all you need to calm yourself is curling into yourself. You can begin by crouching down, with your hands and knees together at a comfortable distance from each other. You can pad the knees for extra comfort. You can then shift your hips back toward the heels and take a bow forward. After you've done this, extend your arms in front of you and allow your head to rest on the earth. Take deep breaths and feel your ribs expand and relax. Take five to ten breaths in this position. There are many ways this pose can relax you. It is good for the inner back and brings your body closer to the earth, which is always good for relaxation.
 
Passive Neck Stretch
 
Sometimes a small neck stretch can make all the difference and can relieve you of the stress that you have been feeling. For this pose, you need to first slide to your belly from the child's pose. After doing that, extend your legs fully. Stretch your arms by your sides and let the shoulders relax a bit. Make sure one cheek touches the floor and take 5 to 10 breaths in this pose and then turn to the other cheek. The benefits of this pose include slight stretching of the neck and bringing your body in contact with the earth.
 
Knees-to-Chest Pose:
 
Can you think of something that's better than getting a hug from someone you love? It's receiving a hug from yourself. You can accomplish this by rolling over to your back and like a fetus bringing your knees to your chest. You need to stay in this position for at least five to ten breaths for this to work. This pose helps with digestion and stimulates the brain, just like receiving a hug from a loved one would.

Farah Jassawalla

Farah Jassawalla is a graduate of the Lahore School of Economics. She is also a writer, and a healthcare enthusiast, having closely observed case studies while working with Lahore's thriving general physicians at their clinics.

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