4 Yoga Moves To Help You Sleep

ThinkstockPhotos-185592384Has this ever happened to you: You get ready for bed, but your mind is still racing, worrying about this or that and you just can’t seem to sleep? It’s happened to far too many of us, but there’s help. Prepare your body and mind for sleep with yoga and it only takes 8 minutes!

Here’s 5 moves that can help knock you out until the morning:

Upside-Down Relaxation
(1 Minute)

  • Sit facing a wall (or your headboard) with your butt about 6 inches away from it.
  • Lie back and extend your legs up the wall.
  • If this is too intense a stretch for your hamstrings, slide your butt farther away from the wall.
  • If it’s not enough, scoot closer.
  • Let your arms rest by your sides, palms facing up, and breathe gently, feeling the stretch in the backs of your legs.

Winding Down Twist
(3 Minutes)

  • Sit cross-legged on the bed and exhale as you place your right hand on your left knee and left hand on the bed behind your tailbone.
  • Gently twist your torso to the left.
  • Allow your gaze to follow, looking over your left shoulder. Breathe deeply, then return to center and repeat on opposite side.

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Janu Sirsasana (head-to-knee pose)
2 Minutes

• Sit on the floor without slouching, legs extended straight in front of you and knees bent if necessary to keep the spine from rounding.
• Bend the right knee and open the hip, bringing the sole of the right foot into the inner left thigh and the right knee toward the ground. If it doesn’t reach, support the right knee with a cushion.
• Inhale and lengthen the spine.
• Exhale as you bend forward from the hips over the left leg, keeping the spine and neck long, and place the hands on either side of the left leg. Gaze at the big toe of the left foot as you focus on the breath moving in and out.
• Repeat on the other side.
Make it easier: Those with tight hamstrings will find all forward bends easier with a folded blanket or cushion under the sitting bones.

And last but…