Yoganidrá - Physical, Emotional and Mental Relxation
Yoganidrá is a fabulous means of physical and energetic recovery. It is done lying down, without movement, but always conscious. The energetic recovery that Nature offers us is done in an optimized fashion, exuberantly appropriating in a conducted way, regaining.
Yoganidrá is a powerful way to fight stress and to reinforce the immune system. It is also prophylactic, as it stimulates the production of peptides. The physical body thus benefits from the powerful anti-stress processes, which also give strength to the immune system.
Yoganidrá influences and stimulates a correct biological night sleep: deep, healthy and optimized.
YOGA and Sleep
The length and satisfaction of an appropriate biological night sleep are affected by several factors, including the present emotional state.
The exhaustive competition of modern societies, plus the detachment from Nature, the lack of exercise, the inappropriate diet, smoking and alcohol have generated frustrations and several physical and emotional disturbances (i.e, anxiety, depression, self-repression, punitive thoughts, etc.), which frequently promote insomnia and early wake ups.
Some tensions are deeply rooted in our mind and body, such as muscular tensions or mental tensions (psychic or emotional), and they aggravate the symptoms and the suffering.
Nowadays, a large number of tranquilizers are consumed to minimize, only temporarily, these symptoms. Those, associated with pollution and with bad dietary habits will have negative effects on the body. To overcome this situation, healthy conditions must be created in the individual, in the family and in the society.
The solution is found in the individual. Learning how to relax, finding self-esteem, creating a balance between the emotional, the mental and the physical and avoiding stressful activities before going to sleep, instead of using sleeping pills – which have side effects – are priorities in order to regain a normal and healthy biological sleep pattern.
“Practicing Yoga (pronounced yoh-guh), applied Philosophy, whose name means to join or reunite (root –Yuj [yudj]) promotes a sain biological sleep, removes stress, strengthensimmunity, stimulates the endocrinal-hormonal system, and the feelings of self-confidence and happiness. In this way, depressions are avoided, the cycle of solitude is broke and the practitioner feels encouraged to maintain a positive and creative approach to life.” (1)
Scientific investigations have confirmed all these yoga effects. For example, in a study conducted by Mr. Khasal, it was demonstrated that just two weeks of a regular yoga practice were enough to end insomnia and greatly diminish the wake up moments during the night.
Yoga effects were also studied in the senior adult population. It is of common knowledge that this population is more prone to sleep disturbs and experiences a decrease in the ability of keeping a continuous sleep.
Besides, treating the senior population with pharmacology has proven to have disastrous results. The investigators Manjunath and Telles (2) studied the effects of Yoga in 120 residents of a House for Senior Citizens.
The investigators compared the effects of Yoga, of a natural preparation (Ayurvedic) and of no treatment, only to discover, six months afterwards, that the Yoga group diminished greatly the time spent to fall asleep as well as it increased the number of continuous sleeping hours and the resting sensation upon waking up.
“One of the thirteen technical disciplines of Yoga Sámkhya, Yoganidrá – Physical, Emotional and Mental Relaxation Techniques – is a formidable way of recovery and physical and energetic replenishment.
Yoganidrá is done lying down, totally relaxed, without dispending any energy. On the contrary, the control of the body is given to the neurovegetative systems. There are no tensions whatsoever, but the practitioner remains conscious. This way, Nature gives back to the body its energetic refill, in an optimized and conduced way.
Yoganidrá influences and reinforces, and teaches how to get the most out of a correct biological deep night sleep. It makes sleeping deeper and more clear (REM and N-REM).
Yoganidrá takes the Human Being to deeper levels of relaxation, deeper still than those obtain in sleeping. Besides, Yoganidrá is prophylactic. By stimulating the production of peptides, the physical body benefits from the powerful anti-stress processes which enable the reinforcement of the imunitary system. “(Text adapted from the material of the Superior Course of Yoga, given by the internationally acclaimed Gr. Master Jorge Veiga e Castro).
Yoganidrá is the tranquilizer of the Yogi, the natural way of reestablishing Harmony and Well-Being in the individual.
Man is more than the addition of his parts, thus any development method to be clearly effective must treat the Human Being as an All.
Article by Alice Paulo, Ph.D. and Director of the Medical Department of Yoga Portuguese Confederation
(1) Veiga e Castro, Jorge (2008), Curso Especial Superior do Yoga.
(2) Manjunath, N. & Telles, S. (2005), “Influence of Yoga & Ayurveda on self-rated in a geriatric population”, Indian J Med Res 121, pp.683-690.
The Child, Sleeping and Yoga
"The practice of Yoga and its Technical Disciplines promotes a state of Well Being in the child, a better acceptance of herself, especially in times of change, which are many during childhood – physical, emotional and intellectual. It promotes concentration and attention and at the same time it induces and enables the body to rest, through its moments of relaxation.
Each one of our movements is commanded by a part of the brain which corresponds to it. In Yoganidrá the child learns to relax each bodily segment in order to give a massage to all the correspondent brain area. Such a rotation in the child’s body reflects in the child’s daily life, controlling stress and promoting tranquility states of being.
The child that practices Yoga accepts better the silence, the night and the moment that she leaves the daily family routines to enter the world of sleep and dreams, essential to a total and healthy growth."
Master Rosa Xufre – Director of the Children’s Department of Portuguese Yoga Confederation