What is Restorative Yoga?
And more importantly what am I restoring? My first day on the new blog. Ready, set, go!
Restorative in a Nutshell
Passive, supported poses using props with no muscular effort at all. The goal being that without the muscular tension to hold you up, one can begin to be more spacious and receptive. Letting go of the habitual way we hold ourselves, whether it is the physical body, where and how we breathe and the mental and emotional holds.
When you let go of these holds, the relaxation response kicks in and the energy begins to flow again to the organs bringing greater blood flow. It stabilizes the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems. A full restorative practice will move and align the spine in all directions.
It is a meditative practice with some hatha yoga qualities because you may be supported in for example a childs pose or in a twist. For some a meditation practice may be a bit daunting and restorative can bridge the two practices.
A full restorative yoga class may only offer 2-4 poses including a warm-up time. For the relaxation response to kick in, restorative should be practiced frequently. Combining a more yang hatha class, with meditation and restorative regularly may lead the student to loosening their hold on their habitual tensions. Poses are individualized for each and every student and for each and every session together
Restorative can be very beneficial in treating side effect of illness. It initiates the Relaxation Response and is calming to the nervous system, balancing the immune and circulatory systems and creating conditions for optimal healing to occur.
Bring on the "Remembered Wellness" so you can tap into it on your own. Look for Restorative Yoga classes or workshops in your area by googling "Restorative Yoga". It is easier to find a workshop/retreat than a regularly scheduled class.