What is Yoga Nidra?

The Covid-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on many areas of our lives, including our health and wellbeing. Sleep is one thing that has eluded many of us throughout the pandemic.

A recent study by King’s College London found that more than half of Brits have struggled to sleep during lockdown, with worries about coronavirus and our ‘new normal’ found to be the primary causes of many sleepless nights.

Even before the pandemic, today’s frantic, technology-driven world wasn’t proving the best environment for great sleep.

Lack of sleep or even poor sleep quality can have a profound effect on your physical and mental health.

It can leave us fatigued, anxious, and at a higher risk of various health problems – including more serious ailments like obesity, heart disease, and diabetes.

With our focus firmly on sleep this month, we thought now couldn’t be a better time to share the power of Yoga Nidra, so you can discover a simple yet satisfying route to better, deeper sleep – even when life is tough.

Introducing Yoga Nidra

Also known as ‘yogic sleep’ and ‘psychic sleep’, Yoga Nidra is a deeply relaxing practise that’s a powerful form of guided meditation.

Yoga Nidra effectively puts you in a state that’s between sleeping and waking to unlock some pretty incredible benefits for health and wellness. It uses guided meditation, pratyahara (translated as ‘withdrawal of the senses’), pranayama breathing techniques, and concentration-boosting Dharana to harmonise and purify the body and mind.

It also takes you through the Pancha Maya koshas or ‘five layers of self’ to promote a feeling of wholeness. The third eye chakra is another area that Yoga Nidra penetrates.

This reportedly stimulates the pineal gland causing a release of melatonin to bust stress, improve immunity and safeguard the body against illness.

The benefits of Yoga Nidra

Yoga Nidra is far from the mind-numbing stillness that people think (and even fear) it is. It’s a stimulating technique that actively unlocks a long list of advantages for your physical and mental health, and it’s becoming a popular aspect of the yogi lifestyle.

Regular Yoga Nidra practice calms the mind and relaxes every part of the body. The soothing effect it has on the nervous system has an amazing pain-relieving impact too.

Yoga Nidra has been found to lower high cholesterol, stabilise blood pressure, and treat depression, as well as support better brain function to boost creativity and enhance focus.

It’s also been used to support individuals with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). A study on soldiers who had returned from war zones documented the healing power of Yoga Nidra when treating even more severe cases of PTSD.

The hugely restorative effects of Yoga Nidra paves the way for daily rejuvenation, and it’ll also help work wonders for your sleep quality and quantity as mindbodygreen details:

“In the beginning, whether you fall asleep during practice (which is quite common) or not, you’ll start feeling more rested and restored. One hour of yoga nidra is as restful as a few hours of sleep, according to Swami Satyananda—so it’s a great tool to rely on when you’re feeling under-rested.

And as you progress, you can use yoga nidra as a spiritual practice to help clarify and execute your purpose as you spend more time inside your mind, fusing your consciousness with your powerful subconscious.”

With some practise, Yoga Nidra can essentially be used to control your consciousness. With this, you can enjoy the rest that’s generally only found with a good night’s sleep while you’re still awake, as well as harness better quality sleep come bedtime.

Getting started with Yoga Nidra

We won’t lie to you, mastering the art of Yoga Nidra requires practice. But getting to grips with this healing and higher consciousness awakening technique isn’t something you have to do alone.

Throughout March, we’ll be co-hosting Yoga Nidra classes to help you find that deep blissful awareness everyone deserves.

Our 4-week programme consists of weekly classes so you can learn the techniques that will help you enjoy the many benefits of Yoga Nidra in your very own home.

Join us on Thursday 4th March 2021 to deepen your practice, deepen your sleep, and deepen the connection between mind, body and soul. Buy your tickets now.