Yoga for Better Sleep

Falling asleep is tough. We totally get it! Just like you, we’re on the search for the best methods for falling asleep quickly. No one wants to be up past their bedtime. One of the top methods recommended by sleeping experts is yoga! 

Yoga and other forms of stretching are crucial to the health of your muscles and joints. By stretching before bed, you promote relaxation to your body, which is exactly what you need to reach a deep sleep quickly. 

We’ve collected a few of our favorite simple and effective poses for optimal sleep. Hold each pose for 30 seconds to 1 minute while taking deep breaths to get the most out of each stretch. 

Hero Pose

hero-yoga-pose-for-sleep

  1. Kneel on the ground with your knees touching.
  2. Slide your feet apart wider than your hips.
  3. Allow your butt to sink toward the floor. Your goal is to touch your butt to the floor, but if it doesn’t reach, that’s perfectly ok. You can either place a yoga block or a thick book under you. 
  4. Sit up straight, reaching the top of your head toward the ceiling while bringing your shoulders back and down. 
  5. Hold this pose for 30 seconds to 1 minute, taking deep, controlled breaths.

What are you stretching?

Hero Pose is great for tight hips. By spreading your legs and sitting back, you target your hip flexors which are often tight if you don’t stretch often. 

Child’s Pose

child-yoga-pose-for-sleep

  1.  Kneel on the ground and sit back on your heels with big toes touching. 
  2. Stretch Back: Keep your knees close together as your bend forward toward the ground

Stretch Hips: Widen your thighs and bend forward toward the ground. 

  1. You can either reach your arms out in front of you or place them down your sides with your hands near your feet. 

What are you stretching?

Depending on how wide your legs are positioned, you will either target your back or your hips. Again, this is good for both your back and hips as they are tight throughout the day if you live a more sedentary lifestyle.  

Cobra Pose

cobra-yoga-pose-for-sleep

  1. Lay face down on your stomach.
  2. Place your palms on the floor next to your chest.
  3. Push up and back, lifting your torso off the ground, doing a backbend. 
  4. Look up, keep your neck in line with your back. 

What are you stretching?

This is an incredible stretch for the back. You’ll find that if you are often hunched over a computer or phone, your back tends to be tense. By bending back the opposite direction, you get your spine back in line. 

Butterfly Fold

butterfly-fold-yoga-pose-for-sleep

  1. Sit on your behind with your legs in front of you.
  2. Draw the soles of your feet toward your body to touch each other. 
  3. Your legs should make a diamond shape. 
  4. Fold forward over your legs holding onto your feet or reaching forward. 

What are you stretching?

In Butterfly, you are mainly stretching out your hips. 

Supine Twist

supine-twist-yoga-pose-for-sleep

  1. Lay flat on your back with your knees toward your chest.
  2. Take both knees and rock them toward the ground on one side of your body. 
  3. Twist your torso and head in the opposite direction. Repeat on both sides.

What are you stretching?

Supine Twist is a fabulous, yet easy twist for the spine. Again, back twists provide a quick solution to tension in the back. 

Cat/Cow Pose

cat/cow-yoga-pose-for-sleep

  1. Start on your hands and knees with your arms directly under your shoulders and legs under your hips. 
  2. As you inhale, stick your tailbone out, arch your back down, push your torso toward the floor and look up. 

cat-cow-pose-yoga

  1. As you exhale, reverse the movement. Arch your back up, tuck your tailbone, and look toward the floor. 
  2. Repeat these two moves 5 times each. 

What are you stretching?

Another back stretch is here! Cat/Cow not only stretches your spine but is great for digestion. Try it out if you feel bloated after a meal!

Knees-to-Chest

knees-to-chest-yoga-pose-for-sleep

  1. Lay flat on your back.
  2. Draw your knees toward your chest. 
  3. Hold your knees close and hug them to your chest. 

What are you stretching?

Are you seeing a pattern? Spine stretches are the way to go when it comes to an evening stretch. 

Happy Baby

happy-baby-yoga-pose-for-sleep

  1. Lay on your back.
  2. Bend your knees up toward your chest
  3. Grab the outsides of your feet and draw them out away to either side of your body.
  4. Roll side to side on your back to stretch your hips and spine. 

What are you stretching?

Pulling your feet away from your body and off to the side stretches your hips while the shifting side to side gives your spine a massage. 

Corpse Pose

corpse-yoga-pose

  1. Lay flat on your back however is most comfortable.
  2. Place your arms by your sides with your palms facing up.
  3. Close your eyes and focus on your breathing

Hint: Doing this in bed is a great way to end your stretching. And if you fall asleep, you’re already in bed!

What are you stretching?

How often do we lay perfectly flat on our backs? Not often with our cushy mattresses and pillows. Laying flat on your back gives your spine a chance to be perfectly and naturally aligned. 

These poses are a simple way to calm your mind and stretch your body before bed. Yoga is the perfect transition from day to night and gives you the time you need to let go of the day. Try these poses for yourself and don’t forget to let us know how you did!

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Monet Moore

Written by Monet Moore