What is Restorative Yoga and how does it work?
A key component of Restorative Yoga is the use of props. These are used to precisely support the body so that the restorative poses (asanas) can be held for long periods of time without any effort.
It doesn’t seem like you’re doing much during a Restorative treatment, and that’s the point. The props do all the work – all that is required from you is to pay attention to your breath.
Relieving the load on the nervous system in this way allows for the release of deep-seated tension.
This practice is not about finding your edge in a stretch. On the contrary, the aim is to let go of all muscular effort in order to reach the maximum physiological state of relaxation, allowing old aches and pains to dissolve.
During your treatment
The poses are precise, and are designed to allow the body to open without any force or effort involved. I will be observing closely throughout your treatment, and will make adjustments to ensure maximum benefit.
This is unlike any yoga you have experienced before – the aim is to bring the body to a state that allows for renewal and rejuvenation. Allowing more energy to flow to the organs and tissues promotes renewal on a deep cellular level, bringing balance to the central nervous system while comforting the mind.
The mindful reconnection with your body experienced during Restorative Yoga deepens self-awareness, and clients often report feelings of being supported, safe and nurtured.
The benefits are multitude but my favourites so far are:
- Gentle opening of your body improves flexibility
- The experience of being supported can moderate moods and anxiety levels
- Very effective for sleep problems – many clients report their best sleep for years
- Releases tension built up over decades
- Can be effective in the treatment of chronic pain
- Particularly effective for treating Fibromyalgia and ME
- Restores an awareness between mind and body
- Develops the ability to self-regulate stress
- Improves immune system and supports recovery from illness
Finally, a 2013 study at University of California showed that Restorative Yoga helps trim fat. It is speculated that this is due to reduced levels of the stress hormone cortisol – the presence of which has been linked to an increase in abdominal fat.
Restorative Yoga restores you to the best version of yourself. I encourage you to try it and see for yourself.