Yoga Nidra translates to Yogic sleep and is a wonderful way to experience conscious, deep restoring rest. It’s an incredibly powerful practice you can do from the comfort of your own home or by attending a class in your area .This specific practice allows you to rest in a state of non-doing and stillness causing your body to release serotonin and dopamine. These very helpful hormones help to balance our energy, mood and health.
Why I'm In Love With Yoga Nidra
Yoga Nidra has been the ONLY meditation that has effected the quality of my sleep, how easily I fall asleep and has increased my productivity throughout the day. This does not mean that other types of mediation won't do those things for you. There are a few key differences that separate Yoga Nidra from other styles of meditation that include:
Shavasana or corpse pose position (lying down on your back)
Being as still and motionless as possible
Becoming your own awareness by scanning your body which is guided by the teacher, giving you something to shift your awareness to the entire mediation.
Your thoughts are not able to wonder because you have a task the entire time to keep you focused but also by not moving your body at all, you allow your body to bring you through alpha, theta and delta brainwave states which are typically only achieved during the process sleep.
Even More Benefits
Further beneficial and potential results of a regular weekly Yoga Nidra practice
can improve immune function, reduce stress, support your health and assist in bringing comfort and balance to your nervous system. If you suffer from insomnia, anxiety, PTSD or depression, Yoga Nidra can bring some relief as well as soften tension in the body. Even if you are healthy and balanced physically and emotionally, Yoga Nidra is still amazingly beneficial as it will allow your body and mind quality rest that will leave you feeling grounded, refreshed and ready to be productive. With regular practice, you will train yourself to come from a place of ease in life’s daily to ebb and flow.
How to Find Yoga Nidra
Yoga Nidra follows the same set of steps each time with little variation depending on the style of teaching. The teaching may be similar each time but the student's outcome will vary greatly. Whatever you experience in Yoga Nidra is okay, there are no expectations and it is a practice of non-doing. As a Reiki Master teacher and Yoga Nidra guided meditation teacher, I chose to customize and combine the two practices into an integrative mediation. You can check out my free meditations on an App called, "Insight Timer" and search my name, Sharlean WIndus. If you live in Seattle, you can come to a class listed on my Shop or listed on the Three Moon Collective website. Try a few people out to find the voice and approach you resonate most with. Sample free Yoga Nidra with some of the leading pioneers in this practice including Richard Miller, PhD, or Swami Jananeshvara.
How to Prepare for Yoga Nidra
To prepare for this practice, you begin the meditation lying down on a mat or the floor in shavansana allowing yourselft to be as comfortable as possible before beginning. The only thing you have to do is try to remain as still and motionless as possible and follow the voice and guidance of the teacher. You may be asked to set an intention as you are guided to shift your awareness to different parts of your physical body and sensations. You will then be guided to effortlessly observe sounds, your breathing and,follow along through observing thoughts or feelings, guided imagery or visualization. Be sure to have a pillow and blanket and eye pillow or eye cover to ensure full comfort and maximum relaxation for this practice.
Yoga Nidra is being researched heavily and implemented into hospitals and government programs to support soldiers with PTSD.