Earlier this month I made a return to a studio where I taught pre-pandemic. YogaFresh, located in Woodbury, Minnesota, is a special place. It’s a studio with students who have thousands of classes under their belt (not an exaggeration – next to their check in names are the number of classes they’ve completed), but everyone is supportive and kind. It’s a lovely thing to find in the fitness world. I’m so happy and excited to be back, and even more so that I get to teach a class that isn’t offered everywhere. It’s a Restorative Yoga and Yoga Nidra class.
What is Yoga Nidra?
Here’s the literal class description:
Gently invite the body back into its natural alignment while encouraging a release of deep-rooted muscular tension, stress and tightness. Your body will be fully supported using props including bolsters, blankets, straps and blocks to experience a deeper state of relaxation to replenish the body’s energy while leaving you feeling nourished and calm. This class offers a combination of classic restorative yoga postures followed with 15-20 minutes of Yoga Nidra (also known as yogic sleep or deep relaxation). Nidra will offer a deep relaxation for your entire body, mind and emotions; while helping to dissolve old patterns and remove obstacles. Restorative Yoga + Nidra will complement an active practice or help you to decompress after a stressful day.YogaFresh
It’s a class that is all about chilling out. Nidra is like meditation in that practitioners learn how to calm and repair their bodies. There are some claims associated with regular yoga practice that sound a little dubious, but yoga nidra has a few scientifically-proven claims:
- Post-yoga nidra, many practitioners feel as rested after 30-60 minutes as they do after a full night of sleep.
- Studies routinely find a boost to dopamine, the “feel good” hormone.
- Brainwave studies show higher theta and alpha brainwave activity during practice, implying that the brain is just hanging on to the edge of sleep.
- It’s a proven mood balancer for those with PTSD, high levels of stress and anxiety, rheumatoid arthritis, and more.
- Helps regulate blood sugar for those with type 2 diabetes.
Dr. Axe shares even more on his website. It’s an incredibly powerful tool to help with a variety of health issues.
Join My Yoga Livestream Every Sunday
YogaFresh has one of the best set-ups for livestreaming that I’ve ever experienced, and it’s a great option for many in these COVID-19 times. In these classes, we spend the first half of class moving through restorative yoga poses. We do use a few props, so make sure you have things that can pass for a bolster, blankets, and more nearby.
The second half of class focuses on nidra. Get comfy and lay on the mat. I’ll guide you through a nidra in the comfort of your own home or the studio. It’s particularly nice to experience in the heart of winter. Learn more about YogaFresh and their membership options, and feel free to email me for pass to class!