The power of rest
Ever felt like having a complete break away from it all? We live in a 24/7 culture where being switched on and connected online via our phone is king and so addicted, there we are, like this pretty much day and night. Stress and overstimulation bring a huge range of symptoms: difficulty switching off at night, wake feeling sluggish, swinging between caffeine and sugar highs and lows, recurring pain issues, sore back, frozen shoulder, digestive problems, IBS, anger issues, a packed calendar with no down time and when you do eke out some space, don’t like what you find there underneath all the busyness, so back to the phone and doing….I could go on.
Nidra connects us with our true nature
However we are human beings, not doings and yoga nidra invites us all to come back to our true nature. There is literally nothing to do. When the busy schedule and stress falls away, there is a deep connection with calm and presence. We can often forget about it or not experience it at all. Yet this connection is there all the time. Just as the ocean is always still at its depths, so too are we essentially calm and spacious, kind and perfect, just as we are. When we connect with this healing space or aspect, we feel a whole lot better!
So how does yoga nidra do this (it sounds amazing!)? The practice of yoga nidra (yoga means union or joining and nidra mean sleep), offers the chance for complete restorative bodily relaxation. It melts away muscular tension, helps unwind patterns of holding and stress in the body and calms the mind into a tranquil state. And it feels great. It can be done very easily, no mat is even needed.
Nidra feeds our brains too.
During nightly sleep we experience a range of healing brainwave states that are essential for physical, mental and emotional health and wellness. We all know what it’s like the day after a disturbed sleep! Nidra enables us to experience these states in a short time so we feel restored and revitalised. I have practised yoga nidra very regularly since my first encounter during prenatal yoga in 2011. A 20 minute session does feel like I’ve slept deeply for a good hour! However nidra is not a replacement for sleep as we need to be in deeper states of consciousness for longer for the proper healing and processing to happen. Yet it can top us up especially when we feel depleted or exhausted.
Nidra soothes us.
In yoga philosophy, there is this idea of having a number of aspects or layers to ourselves. Physical, energetic through the breath, intellect through our minds, higher connection with that deeply calm space and more. Yoga nidra soothes these aspects very easily and simply, undoing all the tension of stress, and instead, nourishing us, nurturing us in a safe space.
Nidra can heal us
It can also help change your life into a more positive one.
The practice has a rich tradition of a number of sources. I first encountered Yoga Nidra adapted by Swami Satyananda Saraswati from a traditional Tantric practice of nyasa. This Satyananda style of delivery focuses on creating total muscular relaxation and gives the mind over to this process. Whilst the mind is busy relaxing the body or counting the breath, it enables our awareness to deepen and in this state there is the potential to sow seeds into our unconscious mind for change. Using a personal resolve or San Kalpa, a short positive statement in simple language, we can help ourselves in areas where we need support, for example, being kinder to ourselves and thereby our family, being more assertive, not wasting energy on needless tasks or late night internet surfing; the list could be and is endless. Whatever part of our lives, busy and complicated as they are, sometimes a little ‘work’ on ourselves can bring huge benefits and much contentment.
Nidra is adaptogenic.
It helps where we need it. So if we are tired and need deep rest, we most likely will fall asleep. When we need to realise something or find the solution to a problem, the answer can magically pop up, during or afterwards at an everyday moment.
Yoga nidra is best experienced live.
In this way, I can hold the space and nourish you, providing a safe place in which you thoroughly relax and draw from the well of life. Good times are most definitely ahead.
To experience Yoga Nidra in person, I end my Monday morning and Tuesday seasonal flow classes with yoga nidra lasting 10-15 minutes, inspired by the Satyananda, Himalayan and I-Rest traditions and the seasons. I am currently continuing my training and knowledge with the Total Yoga Nidra Network, with Uma Dinsmore-Tuli and Nirlipta Tuli. There are also some excellent free nidras you can access there too.
I offer private sessions, where we can work on a shared co-creation dedicated to your wellbeing. These do not need to be weekly but can be scheduled in to suit your needs. A session lasts 45 – 60 minutes, with the nidra lasting 15-25 minutes. It can be recorded so you have it to use as and when. Sessions can be mixed with seasonal flow and meditation to make a longer 60-75 minute session. Prices range from £30-55. Contact me to find out more.
You can also restore body and soul at my Deep Relaxation sessions, Mini Retreats and Revitaliser retreats.
Free Yoga Nidra mp3 downloads.
Devised for the Seasonal Yoga Training Course, it draws from the course yoga nidra. I recorded it on my laptop, so apologies for the audio quality of my voice. The mp3 is woven together with beautiful music from Latin Soul by Andrea Terrano and used with his kind permission.
It lasts 13 minutes and is 12 mb.
Yoga Nidra January 2017
Recorded in my first flow class of 2017.
The nidra lasts 13 minutes 48 seconds and was recorded as I delivered it in class.
There are ambient sounds of traffic, the class.
The nidra draws on the Himalayan tradition of using marma points in the body scan.
Yoga Nidra March 2019
Recorded for my Yoga Nidra Teacher Training (!).
This Spring nidra lasts 25 minutes 36 seconds. Use it to restore energy and nourish x
Meantime, I offer the yoga nidra mp3s with my sincere gratitude to my teachers, my clients and fellow yogis and my path in life.
Warm wishes of the season