The sincere practitioners of yoga and meditation do not shy away from promulgating the positive transfiguration that both these art forms bring to the body, mind, and soul. Both these sciences have been avowed for their potency to amplify the health and wellbeing. Together, they are the art of good health and wellness and share a close bond.
Relationship Between Yoga and Meditation:
- Asana is one of the core elements of yoga practices that employ breathing exercises for diving deeper into the depth of the posture practiced and for body-mind connectedness. When you are calm and connected, you begin to develop the single-pointed attention and become aware of the present moment. This strengthens awareness, that is helpful in enhancing meditation practices.
- In meditation, you are required to sit for longer durations in crossed legged positions. Due to the stiff muscles and a limited range of motion, it can be difficult to sit up straight for a length of time. The yoga postures are a great way to prepare the body for meditation. The poses stretch the muscles increasing their flexibility and direct energy to the spine, to be directed to the brain to awaken consciousness, thus helping you slip into the meditative state and posture easily for longers hours.
- Meditation and Yoga are the two limbs of Patanjali’s eight-limbed path detailed out in Yoga Sutras. The meditation practice follows the asana practices. Thus, they go hand in hand. The yoga postures strengthen the body allowing you to go deeper into the meditative stance. They work together to unite us with the higher soul.
- The different yoga practices assist in bringing the body into a still state through detoxification, balancing of chakras, and more that further prepares you to become fully immersed in Dhyana (meditation).
Here is a list of pre-meditation yoga poses to develop an ideal body-mind for deep concentration practices:
- Standing Forward Fold (Uttanasana): The Standing forward fold is a great yoga asana to practice before meditation because it stretches the hamstrings and releases the lower back allowing you to sit with ease in meditation.
- Stand straight with feet hip-distance-apart.
- Inhale, raise your hands up
- Exhale, fold forward bringing your hands to the ground.
- Let your arms, torso, head, and hands hang heavily.
- Garland Pose (Malasana): Garland pose is a deep hip-opener. So, when you sit in meditation, your groins, flexors, and adductors will thank you.
- Start in a squat position with feet close to each other
- Widen your thighs a little more than your torso
- Exhale, lean forward, and snuggle the torso between the thighs
- Press your elbows into inner knees and join the hands together.
- Reclining Twist (Jathara Parivartanasana): This twisting pose is an excellent way to prepare and tone the spine, back, and abdominal muscles. With toned muscles, you are able to sit in an upright manner.
- Lie on your back and hug your knees close to your chest.
- Outstretch your arms to the side, palms up.
- Sweep the knees to the right side towards the right elbow
- Revolve your abdomen to the left.
It’s no wonder you may face distractions, mind-body challenges and a lot more on a yoga mat. Bring more mindfulness to your yoga practices for reaping the glorious benefits of the yoga style performed.
- Pay attention to the breath and alignment while practicing the yoga asanas. When you systematically approach the yoga asanas with attention to details, you can delve deeper into the pose.
- As you practice the yoga pose, say the Warrior I Pose (Virabhadrasana I), you are likely to experience tense shoulders and other sensations in the body. As you practice the yoga pose, say the Warrior I Pose (Virabhadrasana I), you are likely to experience tense shoulders and other sensations in the body. The tensions felt in the pose make you agitated leading to a releasing of the pose. Instead of reacting to the thoughts, you can act mindfully by simply observing the sensations, focusing on the breath, appreciating the moment maintaining the posture till the teacher guides you out. By being mindful in yoga, you can experience the benefits of heightened awareness and can enjoy the beauty of the present moment.
- Begin and end your yoga practices with the restorative poses that allows you to experience the benefits of stillness. In between the fast-moving and rigorous yoga sequences, add calming and relaxing postures like Balasana, Baddha Konasana for nourishing your consciousness. Hold the familiar poses for a long time allowing the mind to witness the shifting sensations. Over time you can develop inner awareness and tranquility in the challenging poses as well.
Perform Savasana Meditation to balance your energy and focus
With meditation, you have garnished the moments of tranquility, inner calmness, mental clarity, and body-mind connection. Still, it is a challenge to sit in an upright manner. Don’t be discouraged, you can even meditate in Savasana (Corpse Pose). Move your mind-body away from agitation into the oasis of relaxation.
- Lay your back on the floor with legs extended and arms lose on the sides.
- Close your eyes and feel your body.
- Now, gently scan your body starting from toes to the head.
- Become aware of the sensations in the body, the tightness and the thoughts that occur.
- Do not try to change the sensation or the thoughts. Simply notice them.
- Bring your attention to the spine and then to the entire body to observe the remaining sensations.
- Now draw your mind into the breath.
- Place your hands on the heart. Take a moment and feel the physical, mental, and emotional dimensions.
- Finally, inhale and come to the present moment. Feel more rested, awakened, and alive.
Couple the magic of yoga and meditation for adding depth to your practice and for diving bottomless into the ocean of tranquility, awareness, and awakening.