Breath & Stress
Yoga is about going within. We use breath and awareness to enable self-observation. We ask ourselves ‘How is my breath now? What has changed in my body after this practice (asana)?’
Your breathing may have increased in rate and your body maybe warm and tingling.
This practice can be used outside of the class. In a stressful situation for example, observing the breath can help to first recognise the change in breathing and secondly remind you to bring the breath deep down into the lower lobes of the lungs- managing your breath and combining the 3 parts to the breath (abdominal, chest and upper chest) to form the full yogic breath. This tool enables you to reduce stress, anxiety and panic.
Also observing the body and asking yourself is my face tense? Are my shoulders raised and is my jaw tight or clenched? Then letting go of this tension with each exhale – first by telling yourself ‘let go of the jaw, let go of the shoulders etc.’ Notice the changes ‘what did this achieve?’ Simple yogic postures can be used to release tension in the body and shift energy, bringing about balance. The healing effects are on-going and help to balance the mind.