Long, hot summer days and even longer, hot summer nights are here. And though we love the opportunity that the season brings to get outside and explore the world in full bloom, the year’s warmest months can be unforgiving in other not-so-fun ways.
From struggling with the rising temperatures to battling a racing mind after a busy day spent working, entertaining kids home on summer break, or outside having fun, many find the seasonal changes difficult to manage when it comes to settling in for the sleep needed to rest and recover.
Sound familiar? We’ve got just the thing that may help.
Your Bedtime Routine: Yoga for Sleep
Today, we’re back with a curated selection of gentle restorative yoga poses that you can try to help you settle in quickly for sweet, summertime slumber.
What’s more, you can do each one from the comfort of your bed and use your favorite pillows and bedding to give you all the full-body support you want to make the experience even more enjoyable before drifting off to dreamland.
5 Relaxing Yoga Poses to Try Before Bed
Legs Up the Wall (Viparati Karani)
Considered one of the best poses to perform before bedtime by the Yoga Journal, Viparita Karani is traditionally performed exactly as its common name suggests—with your legs up the wall.
To perform the pose in bed, you’ll want to begin by positioning yourself on your back with your knees bent. Be sure to scoot your bottom toward the wall or headboard of your bed as close as possible to ensure that your legs are fully supported.
Next, place a pillow under your lower back to help keep your pelvis elevated and bring your legs up until they are as extended as fully as your body will comfortably allow.
Let your arms to rest outstretched at your sides and close your eyes. Hold the pose for 10 to 15 seconds while breathing in and exhaling deeply at even intervals.
Bridge Pose (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana)
Next up, bridge pose. Known to help massage the spine and relieve tension in the lower back muscles, it’s a powerful restorative yoga pose to do before bedtime.
To begin, lie on your back with your knees bent. Keep your feet about shoulder width apart and flat on the floor or surface of your mattress. Extend your arms by your sides with your palms facing up.
From there, gently press your heels down to lift your hips and back, forming a line from your shoulders to your knees. Use a pillow for extra support as needed while you hold the pose for 10 to 15 breaths.
Return to the starting position before moving on to the next pose.
Reclining Spinal Twist (Supta Matsyendrasana)
Often considered an essential pose to perform following the gentle, back-bending motion of bridge, the reclining spinal twist is great to include in your yoga wind-down routine.
To begin, lie on your back with your legs straight and arms stretched out to a T, palms facing up.
Next, use your left hand to bring your right knee in toward your chest and gently twist your right leg to your left side as you do so, allowing your torso to follow. Let your right foot fall toward your left leg, letting it lie wherever it feels most comfortable.
From there, take 10 to 12 deep inhales and exhales before untwisting your torso and returning your body to the starting position. Repeat the pose on the left side—holding at the end for another 10 to 12 breaths—before moving on to the next pose.
Supported Fish (Matsyasana)
A great chest opener that inspires balance and relaxation, supported fish is often considered a great pose for those struggling with insomnia.
To begin, lie on your back with a bolster or your favorite pillow supporting your shoulder blades. Relax your arm at your sides, palms facing up. From there, feel free to bend your knees, allowing them to fall open at either side of your body where it’s most comfortable, or keep them extended out straight.
Close your eyes and hold the pose for 10 to 12 deep breaths, allowing your body to melt into the floor or your mattress as you do so.
Corpse Pose (Savasana)
Quite possibly every yogi and yogini’s favorite pose to end every practice with, savasana, otherwise known as corpse pose, is considered a natural stress-relieving pose to perform.
To begin, climb fully into your bed and lie down with your legs extended and slightly apart. Keep your arms comfortably at your sides, palms facing down.
Close your eyes and bring your focus to your breathing, allowing yourself to drift through 10 to 12 deep-belly inhales and exhales as you do so.
Remain in this pose as long as you’d like or until you fall asleep.
Rest. Recharge. Repeat.
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