No matter who you are, you probably need more rest, or better-quality sleep in your life. In addition to having a calming bedtime routine, here are five yoga poses you can do before bed to help you get a great night’s sleep.
Setting up your Nighttime Routine
In order to get better sleep, you’ll first need to set up your nighttime routine. This means winding down from your day, turning off devices, and creating a calming sleep space. You can tweak your sleep routine until you find what works best for you. Maybe it’s having a nice warm shower, rubbing on some lavender lotion, and finishing with some yoga before getting under the covers.
Seated Forward Fold
The best part of all these poses is that they can be done while in bed! For Seated Forward Fold, you’ll stretch your legs out straight in front of you, feet flexed and your back upright. Hinge at your hips and reach for your toes, making sure to keep you back straight and not rounded. If you can’t reach your toes, that’s fine! You can use a towel or strap to give yourself a little bit of space to work toward your feet. The goal here isn’t to push yourself. This practice is all about winding your body down. Hold this pose for a minimum of five breaths, ten is better.
Reclined Bound Angle
Start on your back and pull the soles of your feet together, with your knees facing out. You can place a pillow under your head for some support, and let your hands fall open at your sides, palms facing up. If your hips are tight, you can place blocks or even small pillows under your thighs to give yourself some support. Hold for a minimum of seven breaths.
Supine Spinal Twist
You’ll begin this pose on your back. Bend your knees and let them fall to one side. Tilt your head to the opposite side for a nice stretch and keep your arms going straight out to each side. Really relax into the twist, letting everything go. Repeat on each side, holding for a minimum of five breaths.
Seated Easy Pose
Another great pose to aid in sleep and relaxation is seated easy pose. Sit up and fold your legs, crossing them at your ankles. Sit with your hands lightly on your knees and your back straight. Close your eyes and hold for a minimum of seven breaths. This is also a great pose for meditation! You could combine your evening yoga with a five or ten-minute meditation.
This position is closest to a sleeping position as you’re going to get, so it’s a perfect pose to practice for better sleep. Simply lay on your back with your feet splayed out, and your hands at your sides, palms facing up. You can have a pillow under your head and/or under your knees for some additional support. The longer you hold this pose, the better. This could be another pose you could combine with a meditation practice. Close your eyes and let your day go, completely relaxing into the floor or bed. You might want to set a timer and hold for at least five minutes or longer.
Another way to set yourself up for a great night’s sleep is to take one of our Restorative Yoga classes available in our On Demand Library.