Yoga Poses for Anxiety and Depression

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Depression includes a wide spectrum of mental health problems characterized by the absence of positive affect (loss of interest and satisfaction in usual activities and experiences), lowered mood, and the entire spectrum of associated emotional, cognitive, physical, and behavioral symptoms. The biological basis of depression is a disturbance in the balance of neurotransmitters, substances that transmit impulses between nerve cells, i.e., neurons.

Anxiety is a normal reaction to stress. However, if the feeling of anxiety becomes constant and intense, we can say that it is an anxiety disorder. A large number of medical studies point to the fact that regular yoga practice and meditation can help reduce anxiety. Yoga practice is often recommended for reducing unpleasant physiological symptoms of anxiety, along with regular psychological treatment.
People who want to start yoga but have problems with high anxiety are often in a dilemma as to what type of yoga they should practice. Hatha Yoga is best suited to this type of person.

Also, yin yoga is very practical and recommended. Anxious people like gentle yoga practice the most, which calms the mind and heart, balances emotions, and releases accumulated tension throughout the entire body. The most useful yoga positions that people with high anxiety problems should practice are: child’s pose, crocodile, hairpin, downward-facing dog, plow, candle, cobra, fish, boat, bow, bridge, and pigeon.

Proper breathing is very important in yoga. This is another reason why people suffering from high anxiety are advised to turn to yoga. Through yoga practice, you will learn to breathe properly. When you master these breathing techniques, you will no longer breathe shallowly. Three-layer yoga breathing is the most basic yoga breathing technique. You can find out how to master three-layer yoga breathing here.
When it comes to meditation, it allows us to master our thoughts and become aware of the present moment. Meditation gives us the opportunity to fully utilize all our potentials, which we may not have been aware of until then. Just as there are many different styles of yoga, the same applies to meditation. According to Osho, there are over 100 different types of meditation.

Experiment with different types to find your perfect meditation. Don’t get attached to the first one you meet. Do your research. If, after a certain time, you determine that the first meditation was right for you, return to it.
Another part of yoga is very useful for anxious people. It is a part of yoga practice that you should not bypass. It brings your entire body, both physically and energetically, into a state of total relaxation and renewal. It is called yoga nidra, or yoga relaxation. People who are recommended yoga as an additional activity to reduce anxiety and stress frequently hold various beliefs that prevent them from attempting to practice it.

You can read more here about what yoga is not and what it is.
During your life, you must have faced anxiety several times, and it is completely natural. On the other hand, a frequent tendency to anxiety, heightened fear, and panic attacks can have risky consequences for mental and physical health, feelings of powerlessness, low self-confidence, and feelings of anger and defeat, and can have a negative impact on the quality of life.

We are currently in times where our routine is disrupted, many of our plans cannot be realized, negative vibes are all around us.
How can I prevent and get rid of anxiety? First, if you are often anxious, go through unpleasant symptoms of panic attacks, or are exposed to fear, it is important to talk to an expert who will determine the type of therapy according to your situation.
Also, there are various natural ways to prevent anxiety and reduce the fears and unpleasant symptoms of panic attacks, and one of the leading ones is practicing yoga.

5 Yoga Poses for Anxiety

Yoga instructors often suggest the following 5 yoga poses to neutralize anxiety and prevent panic attacks! You can do these yoga poses at home, in nature, or in the park, and you don’t need any additional props except good will.

1.Child’s pose

Yoga for Anxiety and Depression
Photo by Vlada Karpovich: :

Child’s pose is commonly known as the resting asana in yoga. Most people use it to relax and regroup between more challenging asanas. Your body is comfortable and pleasant in this position. Practicing Balasana helps to relieve tension in the back, neck, and shoulders, i.e., parts of the body where stress accumulates. During the pose, try to breathe consciously, calmly, and deeply; this will additionally help you get rid of unpleasant emotions.

2. Tree Yoga pose (Vrksasana)

Yoga for Anxiety and Depression
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This pose improves balance, concentration, focus, and awareness. The intention of this asana is to redirect your thoughts from anxiety to your physical existence. You can practice the tree pose at any moment when anxiety strikes: in line at the grocery store or while waiting for transportation.

3. Warrior III Yoga pose  (Virabhadrasana III)

Yoga for Anxiety and Depression
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If you have developed enough balance to stand on one leg and want a pose that will strengthen you, then warrior pose is the perfect asana for you. This power boosts inner strength and improves coordination, balance, and posture. It also stimulates the digestion process and has a positive effect on the health of the intestines. Studies have revealed that the unpleasant symptoms of anxiety and panic attacks are often based on a bad feeling in the stomach, which makes this remedy ideal for preventing unpleasant symptoms. It helps calm the mind and get rid of negative thoughts.

4. Headstand Yoga Pose (Sirsasana)

Yoga for Anxiety and Depression
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Headstand Yoga Pose reverses the blood flow in your body, which causes you to focus more on your breath and less on your anxieties and fears. By focusing your awareness on the place of your body in space, you become calm. When we increase and stimulate blood flow, one of the main benefits is the detoxification of our adrenal glands, which, due to hormones, are a very important organ for regulating bad moods.

5. Legs raised on the wall (Viparita Karani)

Yoga for Anxiety and Depression

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio:

Legs up against the wall are great for relieving lower back pain and anxiety symptoms. This pose can be performed anywhere on the wall. However, I strongly recommend that you find a pleasant place with silence and space where you can be at peace. You can place a pillow or blanket under the lumbar spine to relieve back pressure.