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Title: YOGA PSYCHOLOGY SEMINAR


1
YOGA relaxation
  • Hitha.P.S
  • I MSc Clinical Psychology

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YOGA
  • Yoga refers to traditional physical and mental
    disciplines that originated in India. The word is
    associated with meditative practices in Hinduism,
    Buddhism and Jainism. Within Hinduism, it also
    refers to one of the six orthodox (astika)
    schools of Hindu philosophy, and to the goal
    towards which that school directs its practices.
    In Jainism, yoga is the sum total of all
    activities mental, verbal and physical.
  • Major branches of yoga in Hindu philosophy
    include Raja Yoga, Karma Yoga, Jnana Yoga, Bhakti
    Yoga, and Hatha Yoga.
  • The Sanskrit word yoga has many meanings, and is
    derived from the Sanskrit root "yuj", meaning "to
    control", "to yoke" or "to unite". It is also
    possible that the word yoga derives from "yujir
    samadhau," which means "contemplation" or
    "absorption." This translation fits better with
    the dualist Raja Yoga because it is through
    contemplation that discrimination between prakrti
    (nature) and purusha (pure consciousness) occurs.

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  • Union refers to the unification of the mind,
    body, and spirit. It can also be considered a
    union between the lower and the higher,
    omnipotent states of consciousness.
  • Someone who practices yoga or follows the yoga
    philosophy to a high level of attainment is
    called a yogi or yogini.
  • In Hindu literature, the term "yoga" first occurs
    in the Katha Upanishad, where it refers to
    control of the senses and the cessation of mental
    activity leading to a supreme state.
  • Important textual sources for the evolving
    concept of Yoga are the middle Upanishads, the
    Mahabharata including the Bhagavad Gita, and the
    Yoga Sutras of Patanjali.

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HISTORY OF YOGA
  • The origins of yoga are shrouded in the midst of
    time- for yoga is regarded as a divine science of
    life, revealed to enlightened sages of
    meditation.
  • The oldest archaeological evidence of its
    existence is provided by a number of stone seals
    showing figures in postures, escavated from the
    Indus valley and thought to date from around 3000
    bc.
  • Yoga was first mentioned in the vast collection
    of scriptures called the vedas, portions of which
    date from atleast 2500 bc, but it is the
    upanishads, which form the later part of the
    vedas that provide a foundation of yoga
    teaching, and of the philosophy known as the
    vedanta.
  • Central to vedanta is the idea of one absolute
    reality or consciousness, known as Brahman, that
    underlies the entire universe.
  • The backbone of raja yoga is furnished by
    Patanjalis yoga sutras thought to have been
    written in the third century B.C.
  • Hatha yoga has three parts a series of exercises
    or movements called asana (poses or postures in
    English), breathing techniques of all kinds, and
    relaxation.

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Yoga Sutras of Patanjali
  • Patanjalis Yoga Sutras is a text that covers
    many aspects of life, beginning with a code of
    conduct and ending with the goal of yoga, a
    vision of ones true Self. The Pantajalis Yoga
    Sutras is probably the most authoritative text on
    yoga. It defines yoga as a focusing of the
    attention to whatever object is being
    contemplated to the exclusion of all others. Yoga
    isnt only about postures, or meditation, it is a
    way of life, or religion. In this influencing
    scripture there are eight steps to awakening or
    enlightenment through yoga.

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  • These eight astanga or limbs of yoga are yamas,
    niyamas, asanas, pranayama, pratyahara, dharana,
    dhyana, and samadhi.
  • The yamas consist of lessons in moral and social
    conduct in our environment. It teaches us to
    restrain from lying, stealing, and greed.
    Non-violence and consideration toward all living
    things is the key. Communication with sensitivity
    towards others and moderation in all things we do
    is revered.
  • The niyama focuses on attitudes towards
    ourselves compromising, cleanliness, serenity,
    devotion, and asceticism. One should study and
    reverence to a higher intelligence. There is an
    acceptance of our limitations in relation to God.
    It is key to have removed the impurities from the
    mind and body.

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  • In the asanas, one focuses on posture practice,
    positioning the body while incorporating the
    breath to achieve a greater awareness in the
    mind. One is alert and relaxed without tension,
    while observing the reactions of the body and
    breath to various postures. This minimizes the
    effect of the external influences on the body,
    such as diet and climate.
  • Pranayama, or the restraint and control of the
    breath, helps with concentration, energizing
    andbalancing of the mind and body.
  • Pratyahara is the relaxation of the senses, where
    no distractions actually activate the mind.
  • Dharana, or concentration, is the ability to
    direct the mind toward a chosen object and focus
    in on it alone.
  • Dhyana, or meditation, is the ability to develop
    focused interactions with what we seek to
    understand.
  • Lastly, but most importantly, Samadhi is the
    ultimate state of Self-realization, or union with
    the source .

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Goal of yoga
  • The goals of yoga are varied and range from
    improving health to achieving Moksha.
  • Within Jainism and the monist schools of Advaita
    Vedanta and Shaivism, the goal of yoga takes the
    form of Moksha, which is liberation from all
    worldly suffering and the cycle of birth and
    death (Samsara), at which point there is a
    realisation of identity with the Supreme Brahman.
  • In the Mahabharata, the goal of yoga is variously
    described as entering the world of Brahma, as
    Brahman, or as perceiving the Brahman or Atman
    that pervades all things.
  • For the bhakti schools of Vaishnavism, bhakti or
    service to Svayam bhagavan itself may be the
    ultimate goal of the yoga process, where the goal
    is to enjoy an eternal relationship with Vishnu.

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BENEFITS OF YOGA
  • Yoga can help cure insomnia, as regular yoga
    practice leads to better and deeper sleep.
  • Yoga can help fight fatigue and maintain your
    energy throughout the day.
  • Yoga is an effective treatment for a variety of
    autoimmune diseases because it can reduce the
    symptoms these diseases often cause, such as
    stiffness, malaise, fatigue, and weakness.
  • A regular yoga practice helps boost antioxidants
    throughout your body, resulting in a stronger
    immune system and improved ability to heal
    quickly from disease or injury.
  • The gentler forms of yoga lower your blood
    pressure because the asanas (yoga poses,
    postures, and yoga positions) keep blood flowing
    evenly throughout your body while you focus on
    your breathing.

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  • People suffering from hypertension can benefit
    from yoga tremendously, as hatha yoga can lower
    your heart rate and blood pressure.
  • The various yoga postures strengthen your feet,
    legs, hands, abdominals, lower back, legs, and
    shoulders.
  • Yoga's stretching and breathing exercises improve
    your flexibility, helping joints, tendons, and
    muscles stay limber. People suffering from
    osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis will see a
    noticeable improvement in their stiffness, pain,
    and other arthritic symptoms by practicing yoga
    poses and postures.

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Hatha Yoga
  • Hatha yoga is an ancient hindu system of working
    with the human nervous system. Because it
    releases tension and endows one with renewed
    energy, far too many 20th century people, yoga
    teachers included, have come to look upon the
    venerable Indian physical science as solely an
    exercise for health and vitality of mind and
    body. It is that, but it is also much more.
  • Hatha yoga practices are more spiritual than
    physical, more subtle than gross, more a means of
    understanding than an exotic way to relieve
    stress or limber up the body.
  • The sages who developed hatha yoga designed it as
    a way to gain conscious control of our life
    energies, a way to go within, to harmonize the
    external so the innermost Self could be
    encountered. To them, it was about states of
    consciousness, about living a divine life, and it
    was a preparation for meditation.
  • As you perform the asanas, concentrate on feeling
    the energies within the nerve currents. Sensitize
    yourself to knowing when the body has been in
    each position long enough to tune the nerve
    currents involved. Then shift smoothly into the
    next asana. It's like a dance, a deliberate,
    fluid dance.
  • During all postures, inhale using the diaphragm,
    not the chest muscles. Do not stretch unduly or
    force the body. Relax into the poses. Don't worry
    if you can't perform them all perfectly. In time,
    you will find the body becoming more flexible and
    supple. Free the mind of thoughts and tensions.
    You will be more aware, more alive, more serene.

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  • The scene of hatha yoga has a spiritual purpose -
    to balance physical and physic energies in
    preparation for meditation. It is not only meant
    to make us young, beautiful or creative, but to
    aid us in quieting the mind, body and emotions
    that we may awaken enlightened consciousness
    know the Self within.

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ASANAS
  • Asanas are the physical postures. The combination
    of asanas or postures exercise every part of the
    body, stretching and toning the muscles, joints
    and spine.
  • This creates great suppleness and flexibility
    throughout the entire body while toning the
    internal organs, glands and nerves, thereby the
    respiratory, digestive, circulatory, endocrine
    and reproductive systems all benefit.
  • Yoga works holistically keeping the whole body in
    radiant health. Central to the practice of yoga
    is the movement of prana (life force/vital
    energy) in the body. Through the practice of
    asanas in combination with the breath, energy
    blocks in the body are removed increasing the
    flow of prana taken in and stored in the body.
  • The removal of energy blocks and increased flow
    of prana increases vitality and promotes
    increased health. This infuses into our day today
    lives giving an increased sense of well-being and
    relaxation in both body and mind, allowing life
    to flow with greater ease.

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WHAT ARE SPECIAL ABOUT ASANAS??..
  • Postures  are held in order  to put sustained pres
    sure  on the specific glands.  Breath is controlle
    d.
  • Postures are repeated to maximize their
    effectiveness .
  • Postures are done when you are cool.
  • Postures are followed by self-massage to help
    with the assimilation of the glandular effects .

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Pranayama
  • Pranayama is the science of breath control.
    Breath is the essence of life which most of us
    take for granted. It is the first thing we do
    when we are born into the world and it is the
    last thing we do when we leave and every moment
    in between is connected by breath.
  • As babies and young children the art of proper
    and effective breathing was intuitive but through
    the stresses of modern life our bodies and mind
    are continually burdened with anxiety and tension
    and we have lost touch with what we instinctively
    knew at birth. Reconnecting with the art of
    proper breathing can greatly enhance the quality
    of our health and our emotional and mental
    well-being.
  • Breath is the most vital process of the body,
    effecting the functioning of each and every cell,
    is intimately linked with the performance of the
    brain and our levels of vitality and resistance
    to disease.
  • Through pranayama we can re-establish natural and
    regular breathing patterns, dramatically
    increasing our energy levels. The practices of
    pranayama utilises breathing to influence and
    increase the flow of prana (vital energy/life
    force) throughout the body releasing blocked
    energy and deep and hidden tensions, supporting
    the whole immune system, keeping us vital and
    free from disease.
  • Furthermore as the state of our mind is deeply
    connected with our breath the practice of
    pranayama promotes a calm and contented state of
    mind enabling us to maintain equilibrium of mind
    in our day-to-day lives.

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RELAXATION
  • Relaxation is the natural state of our body and
    mind but because of the pace of our lives we
    rarely achieve a state of true relaxation.
  • In yoga we begin and end the class with
    relaxation. A few minutes of relaxation at the
    beginning of the class enables us to let go of
    the day, our worries and anxieties, allowing the
    mind to become clear and relaxed and helps to
    release any unnecessary tension and tightness in
    the body in preparation for the asanas that
    follow.
  • During the class the combination of asanas with
    the breath further enables the body to release
    and the steadiness of postures and awareness of
    the breath induces a clarity and subtleness of
    mind. The class always ends with relaxation
    allowing further relaxation on a physical, mental
    and emotional level.
  • Relaxation is a letting go as opposed to holding
    on of non-effort as opposed to effort. As the
    whole body relaxes certain physiological changes
    occur in the body muscle tension is reduced the
    breath becomes slow and deep activity in the
    mind slows down there is a decrease in the
    activity of the sympathetic nervous system and an
    increase in the parasympathetic activity.
  • A few minutes of deep relaxation is more
    effective than many hours of restless sleep.
    Release of tensions, relaxation and peace of mind
    are the secrets of transformation.

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Breathing and Relaxing
  • You don't need to fall into the stress mode of
    life. You can use breath to relax, rather than
    stress, your mind and body. Yoga helps you to
    relearn that natural state that your body and
    mind want to be in relaxation. Deep breathing is
    both calming and energizing. The energy you feel
    from a few minutes of careful breathe is not
    nervous or hyper, but that calm, steady energy we
    all need. Slow, steady, and quiet breathing gives
    a message to your nervous system Be calm. Whole
    books have been written on yoga breathing.
  • Here is one 5-minute Breath Break.
  • 1. Sit with your spine as straight as possible.
  • Use a chair if necessary but don't slump
    into it. Feet flat on the floor with knees
    directly over the center of your feet. Use a book
    or cushion under your feet if they do not rest
    comfortably on the floor. Hands are on the tops
    of your legs.
  • 2. Close your eyes gently and let them rest
    behind closed lids.
  • 3. Think about your ribs, at the front, back, and
    at the sides of your body. Your lungs are behind
    those ribs.
  • 4. Feel your lungs filling up, your ribs
    expanding out and up. Feel your lungs emptying,
    your ribs coming back down and in. Don't push the
    breath.
  • 5. The first few times you do this, do it for 2
    to 3 minutes, then do it for up to 5 to 10
    minutes. At first, set aside a time at least once
    a day to do this. When you learn how good it
    makes you feel, you'll want to do it at other
    times as well.
  • Just as one stressful situation goes into your
    next challenge, relaxing for a few minutes every
    day gradually carries over into the rest of your
    daily life and activities.

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CHAKRAS
  • Chakra is a Sanskrit word meaning spinning wheel.
    These are system of seven energy centers located
    along the spine. Each chakra corresponds to an
    area of the body, a set of behavioral
    characteristics and stages of spiritual growth.
  • Practicing yoga and focusing your energies during
    different postures can help you to align your
    chakras and get all the wheels spinning in the
    same direction and speed. Understanding how to
    fine tune and control your chakras through yoga
    and meditation can help bring balance and peace
    to your mind, body and spirit.
  • There are seven chakras, each associated with a
    different part of the body along the spine from
    the perineum to the crown of your head.
  • Each chakra is associated with a particular body
    location, a color, a central emotional/
    behavioral issue, as well as many other personal
    aspects including identity, goals,rights, etc.
  • The seven chakras are Muladhara- base of the
    spine Svadhisthana- abdomen, genitals,lower
    back/hip Manipura- solar plexusAnahata- heart
    area Visshudha- throat Ajnabrow Sahasrara- top
    of head, cerebral cortex.

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  • Through the movements and postures of yoga, you
    can learn to focus your concentration and energy
    to and from the various chakras in your body.
    This can allow you to compensate for areas that
    may be out of synch with the rest of your body or
    not active at all.
  • By balancing the energy among all seven of the
    chakras, balance can be achieved. This spiritual
    energy is known as Kundalini energy. In its
    dormant state, it can be visualized as a coiled
    up snake resting at the base of your spine, the
    Muladhara chakra.
  • Since the chakras act as valves or pumps
    regulating the flow of energy through your
    system, controlled and purposeful movements such
    as yoga can be extremely beneficial in realigning
    your chakras in a way that can cause great
    benefits to you in your physical and emotional
    wellbeing.

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MEDITATION
  • Meditation is a holistic discipline during which
    time the practitioner trains his or her mind in
    order to realize some benefit.
  • Method of training a disorderly,disorganized mind
    into proficient and creative.
  • Pathanjali controlling of the thought waves in
    the mind.
  • Generally an internal, personal practice and most
    often done without any external involvement,
    except perhaps prayer beads to count prayers.
  • Often involves invoking or cultivating a feeling
    or internal state, such as compassion, or
    attending to a specific focal point.
  • Dhyanam/ meditation is the final ladder of yoga
    to attain illumination or samadhi.

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How To Practice Meditatation
  • Choosing a place.
  • How to sit.
  • Time for meditation-Regular
  • Preparation for meditation

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  • Breathing and relaxation
  • First breathing exercise the complete breath
  • Second exercise alternate nostril breathing
  • Relaxation exercise

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Methods of Meditation
  • Almost all meditative traditions use a particular
    thought,prayer or chant, as a focus so that the
    mind may collect itself.
  • It is through this recollective process that it
    is possible to expand your awareness and to
    achieve the higher states of consciousness,the
    samadhi or nirvana.
  • Centering on soundsTibetan
  • Meditation on breathBuddhist
  • Meditation with mantra (so humIm that)

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Aids To Meditation
  • Kriya yoga
  • First Aphorism of the section of Patanjalis yoga
    sutras dealing with the practice of yoga.
  • Kriya means preliminary or purifying.
  • Tapah svadhyayeswara pranidhani kriya
  • yogaAusterity,surrendering the self-
  • centred ego to higher consciousness,and
  • self study constitute kriya yoga.
  • Various kriyas/Methods of purification
  • Austerity Giving up our dependencies and
    addictions, freeing ourselves from the demands of
    the senses and habits we had previously created.
  • Self study looking into our self with greater
    objectivity.
  • Become aware of center of consciousness
    self realization

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  • Surrender and devotion This replaces self
    preoccupation with a sense of our connection to
    that which sustains this universe.
  • Diet
  • Acording to yogic classification,foods are
    divided into 3 categories
  • Rajasic foods foods that stimulate and create
    unrest both mentally and physically.
  • This food is salty, dry, sour, hot and bitter.
  • It is not good for the mind-body balance. .
  • Rajasic food includes chocolate, salt, eggs,
    fish, tea and coffee, sharp spices.
  • Tamasic foods foods that leads one towards
    inertia.
  • Not good for the body or the mind.
  • It brings in a sense of inertia, clouds the power
    of reasoning, and sucks out the energy.
  • Includes meat, alcohol, tobacco, onions, garlic,
    fermented foods and over ripe foods.

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  • Sattvic foods foods that lead one to peaceful,
    calm state of mind,yet provide energy.
  • It is the purest form of food.
  • This is the best food for yoga practitioners.
  • It brings peace to the mind and is nourishing for
    the body.
  • Sattvic food is great for overall fitness and for
    a balanced energy flow.
  • Sattvic food includes cereals, honey, herbs,
    sprouts, seeds, nuts, legumes, butter, milk,
    fresh fruits and vegetables, fresh juices, and
    whole meal bread.

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YOGA RELAXATION ASANAS
  • These asanas provide mental peace and one feels
    energetic after just few hours of practice. One
    may practice this at the beginning, middle and or
    at the end of any asanas. These exercises seem
    very easy at first, but if followed rigorously,
    are quite difficult for the tension in all the
    muscles of the body must be consciously released.
    The muscles often appear completely relaxed but,
    in fact, tightness still remains. Even when one
    sleeps, the comfort is elusive. Constant postural
    abnormalities exert strain on the back muscles
    providing them little solace in the traditional
    supine pose. That is why these exercises prove
    very relaxing to the spine and related
    structures. The primary aim of such asanas is to
    relax the every bit of muscle and provide them a
    deep repose. Those who feel uncomfortable due to
    the spinal chord problem will certainly get huge
    solace in these asanas. Generally all asanas
    follow certain fixed time period, but one can
    perform these asanas any time.

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Corpse Pose (Shavasana)
  • These asanas provide mental peace and one feels
    energetic after just few hours of practice. This
    asana has two variations. You can learn this
    asana as below Variation I
  • Best time- just before the sleep after a hard
    days' work.
  • Lie flat on the back over a mat in clean and
    quiet place.
  • Maintain some distance between your legs.
  • Place your hands along side the waist with palm
    fingers curled up.
  • Maintain the spinal chord and neck straight.
  • Keep your eyes and lips closed with ease.
  • Keep your body firm and get conscious towards
    breathing.
  • Breathe easy and concentrate on your navel zone.
  • Get yourself free from all the physical and
    mental afflictions.
  • Begin mental counting, say 27.
  • Breathe easy along with swelled tummy repeat 27.
  • Repeat again this number when you exhale out.
  • Next time when you inhale then mentally count 26.
  • Repeat this number when you exhale out.
  • Complete this inverse counting without any miss.

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  • Suppose if you miss out then begin once again
    from the start.
  • Do not make any change in your rhythm or style of
    breathing.
  • You will certainly get relaxed and peaceful by
    the time you're counting gets over.
  • Now get in the Sukhasana pose and relax.
  •  Variation II
  • Hold oneself in tadasana pose with both the arms
    overhead.
  • Maintaining the physical balance on the toes,
    raise one leg and extend it either forward or
    backward.
  • Repeat this with the other leg.
  • Practice this for 10 times.Benefits
  • Mental and physical relief.
  • More effective after Surya Namaskara.
  • Insomniacs particularly heart patients.Consciousn
    ess
  • Physical - relaxing the body, breathing and
    mental counting.
  • Spiritual - on ajna chakra.Contraindications
  • Depression.

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Superior Posture (Jyeshtikasana)
  • Jyeshtikasana is an Indian translation for
    Superior posture. You can learn this asana as
    below
  • Routine
  • Lie flat on the stomach over a clean yoga mat.
  • Keep both the legs straight together. 
  • Keep the paws relaxed.
  • Bring the hands forward and interlock the
    fingers.
  • Bend the elbows and place the interlocked palms
    just above the neck.
  • Support the elbows on the mat.
  • Close your eyes with ease and remain conscious
    towards the breathing.
  • Realize the soothing warmth of the palms
    evaporating the tensions from the neck and
    related areas.
  • Maintain yourself for five minutes in such
    positions.
  • Now get back in Shavasana pose.

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  • Breathing Pattern
  • Natural and rhythmic.
  • Consciousness
  • Physical - On relaxing the body, breathing.
  • Spiritual - On Ajna or Manipura Chakra.
  • Benefits
  • Cervical spondylitis.
  • Spinal chord related problems.
  • Contraindications
  • 2nd or 3rd trimester pregnancy.

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Flapping Fish Pose (Matsya Kridasana)
  • Matsya Kridasana is an Indian translation for
    Flapping Fish pose. The position is called so as
    this resembles a flapping fish. This exercise is
    highly beneficial for the rest of pregnant women
    as by the time of 3rd trimester the tummy swells
    inordinately which often causes restlessness.
    However even such women can practice this asana
    with quiet ease. You can learn this asana as
    below
  • Routine
  • Lie on the stomach, with straight legs.
  • Now move the right knee upward, while maintaining
    the left leg straight.
  • Support the right cheek over the interlocked
    fingers.
  • Retain both the palms downward.
  • Try to touch the right knee with right elbow.
  • Place the knee anywhere according to your
    comfort.
  • Balance the entire body.
  • Close the eyes with ease and mentally relax the
    body.
  • Practice this at your comfortable time.
  • Get back to Shavasana pose when the practice gets
    over.

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  • Breathing Pattern
  • Normal and relaxed.
  • Consciousness
  • Physical- on relaxing the body and breathing.
  • Spiritual - on Manipura Chakra.
  • Benefits
  • Stimulates digestive peristalsis.
  • Constipation.
  • Backache.
  • Sciatica.
  • Rest during pregnancy.
  • Fat reduction.

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Reversed Corpse Pose (Adhvasana)
  • The primary aim of this asana is to relax the
    every bit of muscle and provide them a deep
    repose. You can learn this asana as below
  • Routine
  • Lie down on the stomach over a clean yoga mat.
  • Male persons may hold a thin pillow below their
    chest.
  • Stretch the hands above the shoulder with palms
    facing downward.
  • Let the forehead touch the mat and the elbow both
    the ears.
  • Keep the neck straight.
  • Maintain comfortable distance between your legs.
  • Mentally relax the spinal chord and lower torso.
  • Hold your arms straight but do not put any
    pressure on the belly.
  • Concentrate on your stomach.
  • Breathe rhythmically and count inversely like the
    Corpse pose from 27 to 1.
  • Return back to the Corpse pose when the counting
    gets over.

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  • Breathing Pattern
  • Natural and rhythmic.
  • Consciousness
  • Physical - on relaxing the body, breathing and
    the counting.
  • Spiritual - on Ajna or Manipura Chakra.
  • Benefits
  • Slipped disc.
  • Hardness in the neck muscles.
  • Stooping figure.
  • Contraindications
  • 2nd or 3rd trimester pregnancy.

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Crocodile Pose (Makarasana)
  • Makarasana is an Indian translation for Crocodile
    pose. This is the best pose of this series which
    provides mental peace to the persons of all ages.
    Here the effect is felt at two points - the neck
    and the lower back. You can learn this asana as
    below
  • Routine
  • Lie flat on the stomach on yoga mat.
  • Relax the lower torso.
  • Bend both the hands from the elbow.
  • Place the palms below the cheeks for support.
  • Now raise the shoulder and neck.
  • Remain conscious towards the body.
  • You may realize some strain on the neck and
    backbone..
  • Keep adjusting the elbows so that tension is
    evenly spread out between the neck and the lower
    back.
  • Position your body in best way.
  • Breathe easy and close the eyes with ease.
  • Practice this at your leisure and comfort.

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  • Breathing Pattern
  • Natural and rhythmic.
  • Consciousness
  • Rhythmic breathing.
  • Spinal chord.
  • Shoulder above region.
  • Benefits
  • Slip disk.
  • Sciatica.
  • Waist pain.
  • Asthma.
  • Contraindications
  • Back ache or waist pain.
  • 2nd or 3rd trimester of pregnancy.

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How to Use Integral Yoga Relaxation Techniques
  • Sandra Fults began writing professionally in
    1998. She has served as a newspaper columnist and
    is published in "High Country News" and
    "TIFERET."
  • Use Integral Yoga Relaxation Techniques
  • Integral yoga is a system of physical poses
    (asanas), breathing, meditation and mantra
    recitations. Integral yoga is designed to
    integrate the whole being, relying upon raja
    yoga, bhakti yoga, jnana yoga and Hatha yoga.
  • Difficulty
  • Moderately Challenging
  • Instructions
  • things you'll need
  • Yoga instructor
  • Yoga mat
  • Yoga blocks or folded blankets
  • Loose, comfortable clothing

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  • 1. Flow from asanas to meditation to mantra
    recitation. This flow itself is part of the
    relaxation experience gained from integral yoga
    practice. A hatha yoga asana is Downward Dog,
    which stretches the entire back of the body.
    Other openings are also created.
  • 2. Move gracefully from your hatha yoga asana to
    breathing, which you have been practicing in your
    asanas as well. Focused breathing, or pranayama,
    helps you to control your breath and all the
    subtle energies that energize your body and mind.
    Examples of core pranayamas are Kundalini Yoga
    Pranayama and the Golden Nugget Yoga Pranayama.
    Core pranayamas strengthen as well as enable deep
    relaxation.
  • 3. Breathe. With Sithali Pranayama, you will cool
    your system. Sit in the cross-legged pose or the
    easy sitting pose. Roll your tongue and breathe
    through your tongue. Closing your mouth, rest
    your chin against your chest. Breathe out slowly
    through the nose. Repeat three times. This simple
    breath practice is performed in the morning or
    evening.
  • 4. Practice relaxation techniques. You may want
    to incorporate deep relaxation or instant
    relaxation methods into your practice. Breathing
    will be the path to relaxation. A simple
    relaxation method is to sit comfortably with your
    eyes closed. Breathe easily through your nose.
    Relax your body beginning with your feet and move
    up your body, concentrating on your breath. Count
    your breaths. Continue this for 10 to 20 minutes.

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  • 5. Chant AUM. You may chant "AH-UU-MM" yourself
    or listen to a chant. Sit comfortably and allow
    the sound of this sacred chant to resonate
    throughout your physical and subtle body. AUM is
    the sound of everything it is the sound of the
    universe.
  • 6. Embrace your life. Integral Yoga is a system
    of paths that come together to bring you home to
    your ultimate source your true self. Your
    practice will flow out into your daily comings
    and goings. As you deepen your practice, you will
    meet your days with increasing joy and peace. You
    will see yourself in others.

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The benefits of Yoga relaxation
  • The benefits of Yoga relaxation are innumerable
    and encompass the physical, mental and emotional
    aspects of life. In fact, this may be cited as
    one of the single most powerful reasons for
    people taking up Yoga practice. Yoga has proven
    itself the only complete, holistic science and
    art of living that encompasses, within its many
    disciplines, the art of workouts as well as
    relaxation. Most other workout cultures send you
    packing home after a grueling schedule. But in
    Yoga, it is ensured that after an asana session,
    you are well relaxed. This relaxation is so deep
    and profound it pervades your entire being and
    benefits you at the deepest levels, so much so
    that you are encouraged to practise it at home as
    well, or in the office or other workplaces even.
    Relaxation is an integral aspect of fitness and
    is also the most often neglected in fitness
    regimens.
  • There are many forms of relaxation, even in Yoga,
    but the three most predominant are Shavasana
    (Corpse pose), Nispanda Bhava (Unmoving
    Observation), Dhrdasana and Yoga Nidra (Yogic
    Sleep). These techniques are designed to, relax
    you physically, mentally and emotionally. For
    instance, in Shavasana (Corpse pose), the
    practitioner is given autosuggestions, and ends
    up giving himself or herself autosuggestions to
    relax. These autosuggestions cover every part of
    the body from toe to tip of the head and,
    typically, go as follows I am relaxing my toes,
    my toes are totally and completely relaxed. So
    on and so forth, till one covers the entire body,
    mind and heart.

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  • Likewise, in Nispanda Bhava (Unmoving
    Observation), you are seated, with your eyes
    closed and listen to sounds as a mere witness,
    without, in any way getting involved or
    disturbed. Over time, this grows on you and you
    learn to practise it in public and even extremely
    noisy places, undisturbed. Dhrdasana and Yoga
    Nidra (Yogic Sleep) are also relaxing techniques
    in the former you lie on one side and relax
    calmly, as if asleep, but fully awake and aware.
  • Most of modern mankinds problems stem from our
    inability to fully relax, as proven by medical
    science. The hustle and bustle, stress and
    tension of everyday life only contribute to the
    emergence of a population of disturbed,
    distressed, anxious, uneasy, worried, and
    traumatized men and women desperately seeking
    comfort and relief. They often end up at Yoga
    Institutes and continue to remain there, largely
    owing to the benefits its relaxation techniques
    offer.

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