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  • Nadia Tsai, PT, RYT, Restorative Yoga Certified

What is Restorative Yoga and What are the benefits?

Restorative Yoga is a non-stretching, completely passive approach to healing by positioning the body in various positions. Each position includes the support of props (blankets, bolsters, sandbags, etc.) to help give the client a feeling of floating and weightlessness. The client remains in each pose for 20-25 minutes while the teacher may offer guided imaginary, aromatherapy, light touch, or non-lyrical music while the client simply rests. Restorative Yoga provides space to allow you to enter into a state of deep relaxation.

What is Deep Relaxation?

Deep relaxation (also known as the "relaxation response") is a specific state that is the opposite of a state of tension that is triggered by stress. It consists of several physical changes in your body that include a decrease in heart rate, a decrease in blood pressure, a decrease in muscle tension, and a decrease in respiration (breathing) rate. The objective of deep relaxation is to relieve tension and decrease the wear and tear of life's challenges on the mind and body. Deep relaxation is an active skill that you can learn in order to gain better control over your body.

What are the Health Benefits of Deep Relaxation?

  • Reduction of stress, anxiety, and depression

  • Improved sleep

  • Increased energy and motivation

  • Improved concentration and memory

  • Prevention of stress-related medical problems (ex. headaches, digestion problems)

  • Decreased pain

Why is Relaxation important?

Our bodies are naturally designed to respond automatically to stress, which is known as the "fight-or-flight" response. This natural response consists of a predictable pattern of physical changes that prepare you to deal with perceived threat or danger (by fighting, fleeing, or freezing). When the perceived threat or stress is gone, the body will automatically return to a balanced, resting state. However, for some people who experience prolonged or multiple sources of stress, the body does not fully return to this balanced state. Instead, their bodies continue to be "stuck" in the "fight-or-flight" response which can result in negative consequences to your health (i.e. important bodily functions such as digestion, reproduction, tissue growth and repair, and immune function). The Relaxation Response can assist you in quieting the body's response to stress. It can assist with preventing some of the "wear and tear" that can come from prolonged or excessive "fight-or-flight" activation.

Considering joining a class?

Restorative Yoga classes are offered often in my home studio in Manlius, NY. Refer to our website for complete schedule of classes. Feel free to contact me with any questions at Hope to see you at an upcoming yoga class. Peace -Nadia

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