Whether you’re feeling worried about your assignments or looming exams, panicking you’ve not got your ideal body for summer yet, or your covid-19 anxieties are making your headspace feel cloudy, I can relate.
Navigating my 20s in a global-pandemic has been a real rollercoaster. But one thing I’ve learned really helps me feel good physically and mentally is the power of exercise, in particular by doing yoga.
At first yoga was something I did when I already felt stressed and felt I needed to escape from my worries. However, I’ve learned since then that doing yoga at the beginning of each day actually stops me feeling so stressed and overwhelmed as the day goes on. Yoga, or just a simple stretch video, is a calm way to start the day and I’ve been loving it.
- When you’re feeling stressed or anxious, tension is stored in the body. The movements in yoga and stretching can release this tension.
- Yoga is a form of physical exercise. During physical exercise your body releases endorphins which are the happiness hormones.
- Breathing is an important part of yoga practice. Through yoga you become more aware of your breathing and how it contributes to the control of your body. When I start feeling panicky and short of breath, I now know to take some deep breaths as a quick way to reduce my panic levels and feel calm.
- Yoga clears your mind. When we’re stressed and busy it can feel like we’re juggling 100 things at once. When I’m doing yoga it’s like all these worries disappear and my mind can finally have a break from thinking.
I’ve attended a few yoga classes IRL but I always felt so self-concious that I was a complete beginner and didn’t know what I was doing. And with the room so silent, I was overwhelming anxious throughout the session that someone would let out a fart and I wouldn’t be able to keep it together – and that did happen once! There are also so many kinds of yoga out there and I had no idea which one was best for me.
Through trying out lots of different classes online I’ve had a go at different styles of yoga and I’ve found the ones that suit me best are focused on flexibility and breathing.
In lockdown 2.0 I invested in a beautiful Yogi Barre yoga mat and started completing my daily yoga sessions with the help of these YouTube channels …
20 min MORNING YOGA (Full Body Flow/Stretch for Beginners)
MadFit makes a range of fitness vdeos, all of which I love. Her yoga videos are very much focused around stretching the body, making them great for a cool down after a workout too. She also has yoga and stretch videos for toning and stress and anxiety relief.
25 Min Total Body Yoga & Tension Release | Yoga Healing From The Inside Out
Boho Beautiful Yoga create their yoga videos outdoors surrounded by stunning Canadian backgrounds. I find her voice as she is guiding you through the poses and movements so calming and relaxing, it really helps me de-stress. They also make videos about pilates, fitness, vegan food and guided meditations.
Home – Day 0 – Welcome Home | 30 Days of Yoga With Adriene
I’m currently taking part in the 30 Days of Yoga With Adriene. For each day there are yoga exercises suited to a different theme such as Ground, Balance, Reset and Boost. Yoga With Adriene also has other videos such as Yoga for Uncertainty and Yoga for Courage to suit how you are feeling that day.
If you’re thinking about giving yoga a go, I couldn’t recommend it enough!
Remember you probably won’t be able to nail every move on your first try, but the more you try it, the more flexible you’ll become.
Good luck yogis!