Is it possible to fight overweight, reduce blood sugar, blood pressure, anxiety and stress by resting? Of course, it is! Thanks to a type of yoga called restorative yoga. Restorative yoga requires you to take yoga positions with the help of a support, such as a tower of pillows or a rolled blanket, and keep them for a long time, closing your eyes and relaxing. In this way, stress is counteracted, cortisol and inflammation are reduced, digestion improves, the body purifies itself of toxins and recharges itself with energy, practically without effort (Danhauer et al, Psychooncology, 2009 - Miyoshi et al, J Occup Health, 2019)! Not only that, studies have shown that this practice is associated with a reduction in body weight, blood sugar and blood pressure, even in obese people and with metabolic syndrome (Cohen et al, Metab Syndr Relat Disord, 2008).
For this practice you need a support, such as two pillows one on top of the other or a rolled blanket.
Place the support behind you. Bend your knees and let them fall outwards, the soles of your feet touch. Lower your torso so that your back, shoulders and neck are resting on the support. Open your chest and drop your arms to your sides. Close your eyes and breathe. Start by holding the position for a couple of minutes, then you can increase to 5 minutes, then to 10.
Open your eyes, lift your torso and turn around so you can look at the support. You are sitting on your heels, your knees are on the ground and your big toes are close together. Bring the support closer to your legs and bend your torso forward until you are resting on the support. The hands and elbows are on the ground, on the sides of the support, and the head rests first on the right cheek and then, after a few minutes, on the left cheek.
Bring your legs gathered to the side, sit on the mat. Turn your torso so that you are looking at the support. Slowly, come down with your torso until you lean on the support with your chest. The hands and elbows are on the ground. Finally, turn your head so as to look in the direction opposite to the legs, rest your cheek on the support. Close your eyes and breathe, giving your body plenty of time to adapt to the twisting. Practice for a few minutes, then switch sides.
Go on all fours, the left knee slides forward and the right leg stretches backwards. Slowly, come down with your torso until you lean on the support. The head rests on the right cheek. Hold the position for a few minutes, then switch sides.
Now sit cross-legged and bring the support closer to your pelvis. Slowly, lean forward until your chest and right cheek rest on the support. Close your eyes, breathe. After a few minutes, turn your head to the other side.
Sit up and stretch your legs out in front of you. Bring the support close to your belly. Lean forward until you lean on the support. If you feel the need, you can add another pillow. Stay in this position with your head resting on your right cheek. After a few minutes, turn your head to the other side.