yoga for stress

Heart pounding, brain pulsing, teeth grinding – yes, the holiday season is swooping in and we can literally feel the pressure. Between cooking and hosting, managing gift lists and dealing with a sudden influx of fam, this time of year can be an especially tense time. Instead of letting temporary overwhelm steal our sense of presence eclipse the beauty of this festive time, we’re employing simple, soothing rituals like yoga for stress. Try this routine from celebrity yogi, Claire Grieve, morning or night when you feel the symptoms of stress creeping up…

Stress is part of the human experience, and is totally normal to feel it every day. The problem? If we let stress build up for too long, it can cause chronic inflammation in the body and potentially lead to disease. Yoga is an incredible tool for stress release.

The 3 Best Yoga Poses For Stress

There are several poses that can actually help you relieve stress within minutes. And for deeper restoration, stay in each pose a little longer and set the mood with relaxing music, dim lights and calming essential oils. Here are three of my favorite poses:

Legs Up the Wall | This pose activates your parasympathetic nervous system almost immediately. When I do this pose at the end of a long day, it literally feels as though the stress is melting off of my body.

How-to: Lie down on the floor and shuffle your tush close to a wall. Slide your legs up the wall and rest your shoulders and head on the floor. Lay your arms comfortably by your side with your palms facing up. Close your eyes, breathe and rest here for up to 5 to 10 minutes (just be careful not to fall asleep!).

Melting Heart Pose | If you sit at a desk all day or spend hours looking down at your phone, the muscles in your upper body are likely very tight. This is also a very common area to store tension. Melting Heart Pose is an absolutely luscious pose for releasing tension and emotional stress in your upper chest and shoulder.

How-to: Start on all fours. Place your forearms on the ground as if you are going into a Child’s Pose, except leave your tush up in the air and deepen the stretch into your chest.

Pigeon Pose | Did you know that we store a lot of our emotional stress in our hips? Doing a Pigeon stretch at the end of every day can help you relieve emotional tension before it builds up and causes bigger problems.

How-to: Hold each of these poses for at least 60 seconds and activate long, deep breaths to find their relaxing benefits.

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  1. This article is a bit irresponsible. First of all, the pose pictured is not one of the ones mentioned in the text. Second, the “How-to” is nothing of the kind, especially for Pigeon pose, which is one of the most complex in yoga. People with no prior knowledge of asana practices risk injury without proper guidance. My suggestion is that you either include links to videos that show proper alignment, how to move and and out of the poses, and safe modifications for people who lack flexibility, or leave the how-to out entirely—just discuss the benefits of the poses and conclude with a directive for the reader to seek out a licensed instructor.

    Annice | 11.22.2019 | Reply
  2. Thanks for the tips, love yoga for my wellbeing. Love this Mag, always keeping me zen.

    OUSHA | 11.23.2019 | Reply
  3. I agree! Left me very confused.

    Aditi Khandelwal | 04.28.2020 | Reply

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