A Complete Guide to Yoga Nidra

Yoga Nidra, also known as yogic sleep, is an ancient practice that has been shown to boost energy levels and reduce stress (among many other benefits!). In recent years, research has backed its impact on the mind and nervous system; it has been shown to boost dopamine levels by over 60%.  

In this complete guide to Yoga Nidra, we explore in more depth its benefits as well as giving you some quick tips on how you can practice it.

Let’s get started!

What is Yoga Nidra?

In order to fully understand what Yoga Nidra is, it helps to understand how it differs from other forms of yoga… 

 

Whilst it is a still form of yoga in which you are lying down in one position, it is different from simply the resting yoga pose, Shavasana. Shavasana is a pose that is usually only practiced for one to five minutes, whilst a Yoga Nidra session will usually go on for around 30-45 minutes. 

 

Students will lie down comfortably, either in Shavasana, or on their front or side while a practitioner guides them through a detailed guided meditation script. More structured than other meditation styles, this is designed to draw attention inwards, to encourage an exploration of the state between consciousness and sleep. As the nervous system finds its natural state of equilibrium, the breath balances and unconscious and aspects of the mind reveal themselves whilst students remain aware and observant. 

 

Traditionally, Yoga Nidra incorporates connection to a goal or desire, body scans, emotion scans, breath awareness, and observation of the self. 

What are the benefits of Yoga Nidra?

Incorporating physical relaxation and spiritual exploration, the benefits of Yoga Nidra are extensive:

 

Physical benefits:

  • Increase in energy. Some state that 30 minutes of Yoga Nidra is equivalent to 2-4 hours of sleep.
  • Slowed metabolism and increased hormonal function. This helps the body to remove toxins.
  • Reduced stress and lower blood pressure. In reducing cortisol levels, Yoga Nidra can reduce anxiety and relieve the body of stress. 

 

Mental benefits:

  • Improved concentration. Yoga Nidra trains the mind to be less prone to distraction by keeping the focus on different sensations.
  • Improved memory. By sorting through unnecessary information in the subconscious and slowing down the mind, Yoga Nidra can aid the memory.
  • Boosted creativity. By freeing up the mind and allowing an individual to tap into their subconscious thoughts, Yoga Nidra can boost creative flow. 

 

Spiritual benefits:

  • Better waking mindfulness. Yoga Nidra teaches techniques that can be used in daily life. 
  • Improves progress towards goals. Through intention setting, Yoga Nidra allows students to make clear steps towards their desires, and towards connection with the subconscious mind or a higher power.
  • A reminder of control. Yoga Nidra practice serves as a reminder of the student’s control over their own mind and emotions. It can make it easier to manage difficult times and powerful feelings. 

 

Yoga Nidra guide

If you’re seeking a guide as you begin your journey with Yoga Nidra, you’re in the right place. Our workshops and classes are designed to allow you to fully connect to the practice, and to yourself. We also offer self-led learning which allows you to earn at your own pace. 

 

Click here to get started on our free Yoga Nidra Audio Library!

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"Yoga nidrā is an effortless state of restfulness in the form of a horizontal meditation that takes place just on the threshold of sleep"

"Yoga nidrā is an effortless state of restfulness in the form of a horizontal meditation that takes place just on the threshold of sleep" Dummy Content

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