Yoga as a whole is often touted for its stress-relieving abilities, but there are certain poses that can provide more relief than others. Here, we present some of the best yoga poses for stress relief, regardless of your experience.
The forward bend is one of the most common yoga poses for stress relief. For this pose, simply hinge at the waist and reach for the ground, slightly bending your knees. If you have been practicing yoga for some time, you may be able to touch the ground with straight legs, but beginners may need to bend their knees even more.
Child’s pose is a relaxing pose that gives you a nice break in between poses. You can also incorporate it into your daily life for a quick refresh. For this pose, kneel on the floor with your big toes touching, heels apart, and sit on your heels. Spread your knees toward the outside ends of your mat, then fold forward, reaching your chest into the mat and elongating your hands. You can even rest your head on the ground if you can reach.
Cat/cow pose is amazing for the spine, and helps relax the rest of your body. Begin on your hands and knees, and then, with a deep inhale, push your chest, head, and neck forward, looking up and pushing your abs towards the floor. Do the opposite when you exhale, curving your back upward and tucking your head and neck downward. Suck in your abs. Repeat this pose until you feel your spine is flexible and all tension is relieved.
Sukhasana is one of the best restorative poses, as it requires some mindfulness and a willingness to empty your mind of all stresses. Sukhasana works best at the beginning or end of a yoga practice. To accomplish this pose, simply sit with your legs crossed – or one on top of the other. You can place your hands on your knees, palms up, and fold forward to get an additional stretch. If you place one leg on top of the other, switch halfway through to balance out the stretch. Otherwise, as long as you sit up tall with good posture, that’s all there is to this pose.
Do you have a favorite stress-relieving yoga pose? Share yours in the comments below!