Yoga to prevent anxiety
by Ruth Alonso on Nov 29, 2023
Anxiety is a common problem in our society today. Worries, stress and daily pressures can negatively affect our mental and emotional health. However, there is an ancient practice that can help us reduce anxiety: yoga. For centuries, yoga has been used as an effective tool to calm the mind and body.
In this article, we will explore how yoga can be beneficial in preventing and relieving anxiety. We will discover different yoga exercises that will help you focus your mind, relax your body and find internal balance. If you are looking for natural ways to manage anxiety, read on.
Benefits of yoga for anxiety and how to practice it
Yoga is an ancient practice that offers numerous benefits for our physical and mental health. When it comes to preventing anxiety, yoga can be a very effective tool. Below, we'll explore the benefits of yoga for anxiety and how you can incorporate this practice into your daily life.
Promotes relaxation and reduces stress levels
Stress is one of the main triggers of anxiety. Yoga helps us relax, release tension and reduce stress levels in our body and mind. Through postures (asanas) and concentration on our breathing, we can calm our mind and find a state of tranquility.
Improves emotional and mental balance
Regular yoga practice strengthens our emotional and mental balance. It helps us develop greater awareness of our emotions, allowing us to manage them more effectively. In addition, yoga encourages a positive attitude towards ourselves, cultivating confidence and self-love.
Breathing techniques to control anxiety symptoms
A fundamental part of yoga is breathing techniques (pranayama). These techniques teach us to consciously control our breathing, which can be especially helpful when we experience symptoms of anxiety such as tachycardia or shortness of breath. The deep, slow breathing practiced in yoga has a calming effect on our nervous system.
Learn to be present in the moment
One of the fundamental principles of yoga is full attention or mindfulness. This practice involves being completely present in the moment, without judging or getting carried away by negative thoughts or future worries. By learning to be present, we can reduce anxiety and find a sense of inner peace.
Five easy yoga poses to relieve anxiety
Practicing yoga can be a great way to reduce anxiety and find inner calm. Below, I present five yoga poses that are easy to do and that can help you relieve anxiety symptoms.
The child's pose is a very effective asana to relax the body and mind. When adopting this position, you lean forward and rest your forehead on the floor, extending your arms forward or next to your body. This posture helps release tension accumulated in the shoulders, lower back and hips, providing an immediate feeling of calm.
Downward facing dog pose
Downward facing dog is another beneficial asana for relieving anxiety. In this position, you form an inverted V with your body, supporting yourself on your hands and feet. This posture stretches the tense muscles in the legs, arms and back, promoting a feeling of inner calm.
The cat-cow pose is ideal for releasing tension in the spine. To perform it, you get into a quadruped position and alternate between arching and rounding your back while inhaling and exhaling deeply. This asana provides immediate relief by releasing physical and energetic blockages related to anxiety.
The bridge is an asana that strengthens the abdominal muscles and helps reduce the physical symptoms of anxiety. In this pose, you lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor. Then, lift your hips up, keeping your shoulders and feet firmly on the ground. This position stimulates the digestive system and promotes a feeling of calm.
Sitting posture with spinal torsion
The spinal twist sitting posture is excellent for stimulating the digestive system and releasing energy blockages related to anxiety. To perform it, you sit on the floor with your legs extended and turn your body to one side, placing one of your arms behind you to obtain a greater stretch. Then, repeat on the other side. This asana can help you find emotional balance and relieve accumulated tension.
These five easy yoga poses are just a few options you can try to relieve anxiety.
Yoga postures to relieve anxiety in a few minutes
If you are looking for a quick and effective way to relieve anxiety, yoga can be your best ally. Below, I present some postures that you can practice in just a few minutes to reduce anxiety symptoms and find a little calm.
This position is very simple but powerful. You just need to stand with your feet together and your hands at your sides. Keep your back straight, shoulders relaxed and breathe deeply for a few seconds. This posture helps increase self-confidence and reduces stress quickly.
Imagine that you are a firm and strong tree. To perform this posture, place one foot on the opposite thigh or next to it if you do not have enough balance. Raise your arms up like the branches of the tree and maintain your balance for a few seconds. This position improves your physical and mental balance, helping you concentrate better and quickly relieving anxiety symptoms.
To deeply stretch your hips and release pent-up emotions, try pigeon pose. Starting from a quadruped position, bring one leg forward with the knee bent as much as possible and stretch the other leg back. Place your hands on the floor or use blocks for comfort. Stay in this position for a few seconds and then switch sides. This posture promotes a feeling of calm and relieves pent-up anxiety.
Warrior Pose II
Warrior II strengthens both body and mind. To perform this pose, take a large step forward with one leg, keep your back foot at a right angle, and extend your arms to your sides. Keep your gaze forward and take several deep breaths. This position provides a sense of empowerment in the face of anxiety and helps strengthen your mental focus.
These poses are just a few of the many options that yoga offers to relieve anxiety. Take a little time every day to practice these positions and you will notice how your stress levels decrease.
This posture is ideal for opening the chest and releasing accumulated tension in this area, which can relieve physical symptoms associated with anxiety. To perform it, kneel with your knees hip-width apart, place your hands on your hips and push forward while arching your back backwards. Hold this position for a few seconds while breathing deeply.
The fish pose stimulates the respiratory system and relaxes tense muscles, which is beneficial for combating anxiety. To do it, lie on your back with your legs straight and place your hands under your buttocks. Then, gently lift your chest toward the ceiling while keeping your head on the floor. Breathe deeply and hold this position for a few minutes.
This posture helps calm the nervous system and reduce stress levels in a short time. To do it, lie on your back with your legs together and stretched up over your head. Try to touch the floor behind you with your toes while keeping your arms straight and resting on the floor. Breathe deeply and hold this position for a few minutes.
Corpse Pose is ideal for allowing deep relaxation, releasing any tension or worries associated with anxiety. Simply lie on your back with your legs slightly apart and your arms at your sides. Close your eyes and breathe deeply, letting your body relax completely on the floor.
Remember that these are just a few of the many yoga poses that can be beneficial in relieving anxiety. Explore other options and find the ones that work best for you. Don't hesitate to try these postures and enjoy their positive effects!