Yoga as a Tool for Wellbeing; Resilience
Today's theme is Resilience.
Resilience is the ability to deal with stress, to deal with the challenges that come your way with an easygoing mind. How do you respond to stress? How quickly can you relax after a stressful situation?
Alternate Nostril Breath - a great tool to calm your nervous system down, and to distract you from pesky thoughts and problems. After a few minutes of this breathing technique, you'll feel nice and calm because you will have reduced the amount of stress hormones in your body.
(Breathe in and out normally).
Block your right nostril with your thumb while you breathe in through the left
Block your left nostril too, with your finger. Pause
Release your thumb/R nostril and breathe out
Block both, pause
Continue like so for 5+ rounds: the breath moves up L, pause, down R, pause, up R, pause, down L
Resilience comes from your solar plexus, the centre of your ego, so this practice will focus on increasing this energy within you with twists and the belly lock.
Seated/ neutral cat - practice the belly lock "uddhyana bandha" - breathe in deeply, "lock on" - move your belly towards your spine, in and up. "unlock" and breathe out slowly
"Awkward Twist": kneel, palm to palm, elbows wide. Lean forward and twist upper body, keeping your palms at your centre and elbows wide.
Situp to lying down: sit with your legs straight out in front, toes up. Bring palms together at your centre. "Lock on" and very slowly lower all the way down, then all the way up.
Plank - hold for a minute. Observe your body's response. Can you hold a plank with a positive mindset, or do you switch on lots of tension when you're in plank? Try a different perspective!
Dancing Warrior flow - Warrior I, II, lift up/down, reverse, Warrior II. Repeat other side
Partner Triangle pose - face each other, say hi! Then switch hands to come into a twist
Lie down and take a twist
Make a note of what made you stressed today. How did you react? How long did it take to calm down, and what coping strategy did you use? Do this daily for 2 weeks. Why don't you ask your friends what their coping strategies are. Stroking your cat / playing an instrument / playing music / reading or listening to a book etc etc. You'll begin to see what works for you. Maybe you could try one of the breathing techniques you've learnt this week in mental health awareness week.
RELAX KIDS GUIDED RELAXATION
Lie down, rub hands to make them hot and place the palms over your eyes. You can add a relaxing scent on your wrists if you like.
Confidence Boost - Become aware of and release tension from different parts of your body from your toes to the top of your head. Feel yourself growing taller and taller. As you feel yourself growing taller, you start to feel more confident and self-assured.
I am strong and calm and in control.