Here’s how you can manage your depression with the help of yogic practices

Published on: 28 August 2020, 19:17 pm IST

The first step to fighting depression is to manage its symptoms. And in this endeavour, yogic practices like breathing exercises and asanas can help.

yoga for depression
Ease your depressive symptoms with yoga. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Depression, also called major depressive disorder or clinical depression, is a state of mind or mood  that causes a persistent sadness and loss of interest. It affects how a person feels, thinks and behaves and can lead to emotional and physical turbulence.

Yoga can be very beneficial in dealing with depression because it involves different postures, breathing techniques, and meditation which helps to relieve stress, improve concentration, bring positive energy and improves over all well-being and mind body connection.

Medical studies also show how yoga boosts the production of happy hormones in the body, thus making it a holistic way of managing depressive symptoms. But if you are new to yoga and are wondering where and how you can begin your journey to better mental health with this practice, then here’s help.

Here six yoga asanas you must try for depression:

1. Baddha konasana or butterfly pose

yoga for depression
Butterfly pose is great for your thighs. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
  • It improves circulation
  • Massively helps reduce anxiety

2. Shishuasana or child’s pose

yoga for depression
Hold onto that stretch and give your back a new lease on life with child’s pose. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
  • Allows deep relaxation
  • Has a calming effect on the nervous system

Also, read: Not just your mind, here are 5 things depression can do to your body

3. Setubandhasana or bridge pose

yoga for depression
Here are some weight loss poses for beginners that you can’t go wrong with. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
  • Calms the mind
  • Helps manage thyroid problems

4. Halasana or plough pose

yoga for depression
Give your weight loss regimen the push it needs with these yoga poses. Image courtesy: Shraddha Iyer/Sarva Yoga
  • Improves mood and energy levels
  • Reduces stress

Also, read: These 5 effective yoga poses can reduce symptoms of depression

5. Shavasana or corpse pose

yoga for depression
Let’s go meet our well rested self! Image Courtesy: Shutterstock
  • Helps relax the body
  • Allows rejeuvenation

6. Adhomukh svanasana or downward-facing dog

yoga for depression
Upward-and-downward-facing dog sequence is a quick-fix for weight loss. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
  • Increases blood circulation to brain
  • Boosts mood

Also, read: Here’s how depression affected my whole life & how I won over it

Breathing exercises can also bring relief as they offer emotional stability

You can start with a centring practise
Sit in a cross-legged position. Close your eyes and focus on your breathing pattern, inhalation and exhalation.  Remove any unwanted or unpleasant thoughts and emotions as you breathe, and slowly try to turn your attention back to your breathing.  The key here is to focus on your inhalation and exhalation in order to prevent your mind from wandering off. This is a powerful tool for also preventing low moods and breath awareness restores energy during, lightens your emotional burden, and relaxes the mind.

Apart from this, you can also try meditation, chanting, and pranayama to calm your mind and bring in some positivity into your life—while dealing with depression.

Dr Disha Nayak Dr Disha Nayak

Dr Disha Nayak (M.PTH rehabilitation) is a physiotherapist, fitness enthusiast and a blogger. Having worked in the field of women’s health, geriatric rehabilitation, oncology, and physiotherapy rehabilitation, her idea of giving back to society is by writing on health and fitness.

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