CBD and Yoga: The Perfect Pairing for International Yoga Day
If you live in the northern hemisphere, you'll know that June 21 marks the longest day of the year (known as the Summer Solstice). It also marks the international celebration of Yoga Day.
If you are a yogi, then this International Yoga Day, you might be looking for a way to enhance your practice and deepen your relaxation. An increasingly popular option is to incorporate CBD into your routine. Why, we hear you ask? Well, CBD has been shown to have calming and focusing effects, making it a great addition to any yoga practice.
In this article, we’re going to recap on the effects CBD can have on the body, why you should incorporate CBD in to your yoga practice, plus our top three yoga poses for ultimate relaxation. So, let's get started!
What is CBD and how does it work?
If you’re new to the world of CBD, let us recap on what exactly CBD is. CBD stands for cannabidiol, which is a non-psychoactive compound found in the cannabis plant. It interacts with the body's natural endocannabinoid system, which plays a role in regulating various physiological and cognitive processes.
Research on how CBD interacts with the body suggests that when it reacts with the body’s endocannabinoid receptors, it can have deeply calming, analgesic, and anxiolytic effects. By bringing CBD onto your yoga mat and into your practice, you can enhance your feelings of relaxation and focus, and improve your overall state of mental well-being.
Using yoga as a relaxation technique
Yoga is not just a physical exercise; it is a holistic practice that combines movement, breath control, and meditation to promote overall well-being. One of the main benefits of practising yoga for relaxation is its ability to activate the parasympathetic nervous system, also known as the "rest and digest" response. This is the opposite of the "fight or flight" response that is activated when we are stressed or in danger. By stimulating the parasympathetic nervous system, yoga helps to calm the body and mind, reduce stress levels, and promote a sense of relaxation and well-being.
Relaxation is essential for overall health and well-being, helping to reduce stress, lower blood pressure, improve sleep quality, and boost our immune system. When you are relaxed, your body and mind are able to recharge and rejuvenate, allowing you to tackle whatever challenges come your way with a clear and focused mind.
Relaxing regularly can also help to improve sleep quality, increase your energy levels and feelings of well-being, lowering blood pressure, and ease muscle pain and soreness. When you are stressed, cortisol levels rise, which decreases the flow of blood and oxygen to the stomach. Relaxing regularly can also help to improve our digestion and reduce the likelihood of stomach cramps.
In addition to its effects on the nervous system, yoga also helps to release tension and tightness in the muscles, improve circulation, and increase flexibility. It promotes deep breathing, which helps to oxygenate the body and calm the mind. The combination of physical movement, breath control, and meditation in yoga creates a powerful synergy that can help us find inner peace and relaxation.
3 Yoga Relaxation Poses to Find Inner PeaceYoga Relaxation Pose #1: Child's Pose
Also known as Balasana in Sanskrit, Child’s Pose is a gentle resting pose that is often used as a relaxation pose in yoga practice. It helps to release tension in the back, neck, and shoulders, and it promotes deep relaxation and a sense of surrender.
Start by kneeling on your mat with your knees hip-width apart. Sit back on your heels and slowly lower your torso down towards the floor. Allow your forehead to rest on the mat, or if that's not comfortable, you can place a pillow or a folded blanket under your forehead for support. Extend your arms forward and relax them on the mat, palms facing down. Take deep breaths and allow your body to sink deeper into the pose with each exhale. Stay in this pose for a few minutes, or as long as feels comfortable.
Child's pose is a wonderful pose for relaxation as it encourages a sense of surrender and letting go. It helps to calm the mind, relieve stress and anxiety, and promote a deep sense of peace and tranquillity. It is also a great pose for relieving tension in the back, neck, and shoulders, which are common areas where we hold stress and tension.Yoga Relaxation Pose #2: Corpse Pose
Corpse pose, also known as Savasana in Sanskrit, is the ultimate relaxation pose in yoga. It is often practised at the end of a yoga session to allow the body and mind to fully relax and integrate the benefits of the practice.
To do Corpse pose, lie down on your mat with your legs extended and slightly apart. Place your arms by your sides, palms facing up. Close your eyes and take deep breaths, allowing your body to completely relax. Feel the weight of your body sinking into the mat, and let go of any tension or stress. Stay in this pose for at least five minutes, or as long as you like.
Corpse pose is a powerful pose for relaxation as it allows us to completely let go and surrender. It helps to release physical and mental tension, reduce stress levels, and promote a deep state of relaxation and calm. It is also a wonderful pose for improving sleep quality and reducing anxiety.Yoga Relaxation Pose #3: Legs up the Wall Pose
Legs up the Wall pose, also known as Viparita Karani in Sanskrit, is a restorative pose that helps to calm the nervous system, relieves tension, and promotes relaxation and rejuvenation.
To do Legs up the Wall pose, sit with one side of your body against a wall. Lie back and swing your legs up the wall, so that your body forms an L-shape. You can place a folded blanket or a bolster under your hips for support if needed. Relax your arms by your sides, palms facing up. Close your eyes and take deep breaths, allowing your body to relax and release tension. Stay in this pose for at least five minutes, or as long as feels comfortable.
Legs up the wall pose is a gentle inversion that helps to reverse the effects of gravity on the body, improve circulation, and calm the nervous system. It is a wonderful pose for reducing swelling in the legs, relieving tension in the lower back, and promoting a sense of relaxation and rejuvenation.
Incorporating These Relaxation Poses into Your Routine
You can practice these poses individually or as a sequence, depending on your preferences and time constraints. Aim to practice them for at least 10-15 minutes each day, or longer if you have the time.
You can start your day with a few minutes of Child's pose to set a calm and peaceful tone for the day ahead. Then, end your day with a longer practice of Corpse pose and Legs up the wall pose to help you unwind and relax before bed. You can also practice these poses whenever you feel stressed, overwhelmed, or in need of a moment of calm and tranquillity.
Remember to listen to your body and modify the poses as needed. If you have any injuries or medical conditions, consult with a qualified yoga instructor or healthcare professional before practising these poses.
The benefits of combining CBD and yoga.
Combining CBD and yoga can have numerous benefits for both the mind and body. CBD can help to reduce anxiety and stress, allowing for a deeper and more focused yoga practice. By enabling the body to relax, CBD can make it easier to hold poses and flow through sequences. Additionally, CBD can enhance the meditative aspects of yoga, allowing users to be more present at the moment and promote a sense of calm and well-being.
Choosing the right CBD product for your needs.
When incorporating CBD into your yoga practice, it’s important to choose the right product for your needs. Consider factors such as dosage, method of consumption, and the specific benefits you are looking for. For example, if you are looking for something that might help to soothe your aching muscles, a topical CBD cream may be the best option. On the other hand, if you are looking for a more general sense of relaxation and well-being, a CBD tincture may be more appropriate.
Tips for maximising the benefits of CBD and yoga together.
In a world that is filled with constant noise and chaos, finding moments of peace and tranquillity can seem like an impossible task. But with the power of yoga and CBD, it is entirely possible to find inner peace and serenity amidst the hecticness of everyday life. To get the most out of combining CBD and yoga, it’s important to approach it with intention and mindfulness. Incorporate CBD into your routine in a way that feels natural and comfortable for you. Whatever approach you choose, be sure to listen to your body and adjust as needed to find the perfect balance of CBD and yoga for your unique needs.
So, grab your yoga mat, find a quiet corner, and give yourself the gift of relaxation and inner peace. Take a few moments to tune into your body and mind, and let go of the stresses and worries that weigh you down. Allow yourself to be present in the moment, and experience the blissful calm that comes from finding inner peace through yoga relaxation poses.