This post introduces belly breathing and then also gives some tips for easy yoga relaxation.
You can practice in the manner shown in the video but then belly breathing is really good anywhere, anytime and in most positions: standing, sitting or laying down. It’s become second nature for me now and I don’t have to think about it when it’s helpful, my body just does it.
This yogic breathing technique is a great stress relief exercise. The focus is on belly breathing. Inflate your belly on the inhale and deflate the belly on exhale.
I’m also going to share again a posture that’s really helped with pain/neuropathy and paresthesia and autonomic discomfort in general. It helps calm the nervous system in general and that would include what is considered anxiety and many sorts of tension as well. It does not work in a structural sense. It’s energetic somehow, though I’ve simply discovered it with practice and exploration so I don’t really know how it works. The thing is it temporarily, on good days, relieves pain in my whole body. Even in my arms. It’s like there is an energy shift of some sort while I do it and for a while afterwards. I also do it every night before I go to bed as I find it deeply relaxing.
legs against the wall:
Or I also have my butt a few inches from the wall. Feel free to make any adjustments your body finds necessary. Absolute form isn’t terribly important when it comes to finding some relief from discomfort. Instead must paying attention to what your body needs and wants is good. This can be a time for meditation too. Listening to the body is a kind of mindfulness meditation. Hatha yoga in general, is ideally, a sort of mindfulness practice. On some days doing this can alter the course of the day for the better. It’s really quite wonderful when it works that way, though at this point yoga is integrated into my life rather seamlessly. It is simply part of my day and when I miss it I feel it.
Lay with your hand on your belly and your heart and pay attention to your breath for a while. Alternately put your arms above your head like in the picture and breathe. You can do belly breaths like in the above video if you like. Experiment and see what your body likes best.
One can modify more in this manner: If folks can’t get their legs up the wall because their hamstrings are tight, they will have a similar effect by putting their lower legs on the seat of a chair. You can put a blanket underneath your heels if the chair is too hard.
I also find that doing twists on the ground, really gently can be helpful after doing legs against the wall. After you twist to one side follow by twisting to the other.
And roll from side to side and up and down too.
There you have it — a mini yoga session to help calm the heart and it works for garden variety anxiety too as well as more intense forms of discomfort. This little combination of postures is also helpful in minimizing some of the pain of withdrawal. For more suggestions on natural pain relief see: Adventures in natural pain relief
For more info on yoga for beginners or for rehab see here:
● Your yoga for today (a wonderful gentle 45 minute yoga session)