Saturday, 12 December 2015

Yoga and Anxiety ~ Blogmas Day 12


I've been practicing Yoga for a while now and the past 6 months I've been taking it more seriously, in the sense that I'm learning about each pose, what muscles you use and the benefits of doing each pose. I'm not just doing the pose.

I recently came across a YouTube video of Amy Cuddy's Ted talk about the Power pose. Amy is a Social psychologist and studies body language.

"her research focuses on how adopting powerful postures (imagine Wonder Woman) changes people's feelings, behaviours, and hormone levels, even impacting how well – or poorly -- people perform in stressful situations like job interviews."

After reading more about Amy's research, it got me thinking about Yoga Poses. I know Yoga helps with your overall posture, which helps with your confidence. I wanted to know what Yoga poses help relieve Anxiety.

I've been suffering with Anxiety (Social Anxiety) for a long time (Mental Health post).  I really think Yoga has helped me control it. I've done some research and here are a few yoga poses that help relieve stress / anxiety.

I tried to find ones that are suitable for all levels. (Please note, My poses are always attempts. I'm not a Yoga Instructor, I've posted these so you get an idea of the pose.)

  • Standing Forward Fold (aka Uttanasana)

  • A Sitting Forward Fold

  • Legs up the wall (aka Viparita Karani )

  • Childs Pose (aka Balasana)

  • Cobra Pose (aka Bhujangasana) or Upward Facing Dog (Picture is Upward Facing Dog)
  • Savasana

I personally find poses that focus on Balance are the best because they really help take your attention off of your mind and puts all your focus into your body.


  • Tree Pose

  • Dancers Pose

I believe Yoga poses do help relieve anxiety. I love my time on my Yoga mat because its where I'm just focused on my breathing and (depends on what poses I'm doing,) balance.

I'm not saying if you feel anxious you have to stop what you are doing and do a few yoga poses esp. when you are out in public . Unless you want to, I'm not going to stop you. If you have that much confidence that's Awesome!!. But, these poses are great to help you when you need to wind down, or before you start your day.

  • Lotus Pose ~ (This pose I think is more for intermediate to advanced yogis, I can only do the basic variation of this pose. But, This Pose also helps to calm the brain.) 


Do you practice Yoga to help with your mental health? What are your favourite Yoga poses to help relieve Stress? What exercises/workouts do you do? Please leave a comment below :)

Please note I AM NOT A PERSONAL TRAINER. This is what I find works for me.

Donna x

A year of Yoga Challenges Post

Keep Calm and Do Yoga Post

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