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Better Sleep: Another reason to try Yoga

Recent research shows that regular Yoga practice can increase well being, better sleep, better body awareness, weight loss, and greater happiness. Early evidence even suggest that yoga can slow aging on the cellular level, possibly through its stress relieving effects.

What I find interesting about these findings is that they suggest that regular Yoga practice can improve multiple areas of your life at once! For example Yoga can improve your sleep which in turn gives you more energy and focus during the day. Did you ever notice that when you feel better physically and mentally you tend to eat a healthier diet and are more physically active? These changes in turn can lead to better weight control, fewer aches and pains which help improve your sleep and so the cycle continues.


Do you feel refreshed and ready to go or groggy and grumpy in the morning? 1 in 6 Americans sleep less than 6 hours a night; not getting enough sleep can make you too tired to work efficiently, to exercise, or eat healthfully. Recent research shows that Yoga may help you fall asleep faster, sleep longer, and more soundly without the negative effects of medications.

Yoga facilitates sleep by reducing stress, anxiety, and arousal which are known causes of poor sleep. One small study looked at a Kundalini meditation and breathing practice. Twenty people who had trouble sleeping did the 30-minute practice every night before going to bed. After eight weeks, researchers found that the participants were sleeping 36 minutes longer on average and waking up less during the night. Over all, the quality of their sleep improved by 11%. Research shows that there is a "dose-response" effect—meaning that the more you practice yoga, the fewer sleep disturbances you are likely to experience and the more restorative your sleep will be. Even if you don't have problems falling asleep, yoga can improve the quality of your slumber.


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