Yoga is considered to be a relaxing, restorative practice but in most of the cases, beginners are having a hard time feeling desired pleasure due to involved energy for each posture. So, it takes a little bit sweat to taste yoga poses. It is said that if a yoga represents smorgasbord, then the restorative postures would surely represent the dessert. Such well-supported and soothing poses offer the practitioners an opportunity to experience the sweetness of life and linger quietly for the moment.
It is true that in an ideal world, each asana should feel restorative to an individual who practices yoga. Yet, some poses especially belong to the special category of poses that are restorative and are there to leave us well rested and nourished for the upcoming yoga practice. For a special physical comfort, restorative postures are supported by the blocks, blankets and various props. Such postures are held for several minutes and benefit the practitioner completely each time.
Beginners may find restorative practice intimidating, because the use of all those props may be quite difficult and hard understanding. But, few guiding tips will help beginners and other practitioners start a typical and needed restorative practice of their own, in order to withstand through the complete yoga workout. Starting out with a gentle movement that lasts for couple of minutes is essential, before settling into the practice or even restorative pose. Stretching warms the muscles and prepares the body for the workout and relaxation. It flows the blood into the muscles and joints, preparing the body for the action, therefore avoiding the injuries.
Avoiding the props during the restorative practice is a big no. Using straps, blocks, balls, blankets, towels, walls, chairs, eye bags, sandbags and pillows is necessary in order to support yourself in the restorative poses and enable your body to feel the full pleasure of yoga practice. Using props is a fair game in restorative yoga, so the more the body is supported to the fullest, the deeper the sense of surrender and relaxation will be for an individual. It’s not important to use the props only, it’s also important to use them right, so taking the time to get comfortable with the props is the first step to making the necessary adjustments before the desired settle in.
The position of the body and the props is also essential, because an inch of wrong position can turn the pleasure into the unwanted agony. To enable yourself a greater comfort, you should use your inner wisdom and guide yourself towards the modifications which will enable you complete yoga experience and pleasure. You can be inspired to include one, two or even three restorative postures into the practice, or even devote a week’s practice to restorative positions and restorative yoga.
As it is previously said, restorative practices and poses can be quite challenging for the beginners, but they look peaceful and engaging enough to be practiced. If the body rests quietly, it doesn’t necessarily include that the mind will settle in the peacefulness as well. So, a practitioner should be patient.
An interesting fact about the restorative yoga poses is that most of them are similar to the poses present in normal and regular yoga practice. The only difference is that the restorative poses are usually performed with the support of the various props. Before advancing to the yoga practice and even restorative poses, it is necessary to perform a warm-up. The warm-up can be either gentle vinyasa or sun salutation, whatever your teacher tells you to perform and use before the each yoga practice. It is recommended that each restorative yoga pose should be held for couple of minutes, but it can also last as long as 10 to 15 minutes.
There are couple of restorative yoga poses which are practiced widely. Usual restorative yoga pose includes legs against the wall, which is performed with a bolster placed under the back, hips or legs. Child’s pose is also popular one, where an individual tucks heals under the hips and cradles a pillow or a bolster with the upper part of the body. Reclining bound angle is another pose which is performed with the props placed under the legs, arms or head. Savsana, or relaxation, is a restorative yoga pose where an individual rests the head on a pillow, feet on blanket and legs on bolster. It’s no wonder that instructor may suggest an individual to use blanket to cover the body, so that a practitioner could feel more comfortable.
For a practitioner who wishes to practice restorative yoga and make the best out of the restorative yoga poses, it is important to have a wide range of various props. The most common props used in the restorative yoga practice are pillows, blankets, bolsters, straps, chairs and blocks. These props help an individual to perfect the poses. They support the body when a practitioner is relaxing or stretching. For each pose, it is necessary to have the right sized props as the non-suitable props may lead to the bad comfort and concentration while performing certain pose.
Emotional discomfort is also frequent, especially when practicing restorative yoga. A practitioner may feel a sense of shapelessness and motionlessness, but it is something which is usually overcome by the constant practice. The restorative yoga poses can and will surely make and individual feel vulnerable while a person performs it, but it is always possible to make each of your step comfortable as possible. Just by putting an eye pillow, or placing the feet on the wall, you will make restorative yoga practice easier for yourself. This is an advantage of restorative yoga which should be widely used – the props. When the use of props and the perfection of poses is completed, an individual will feel the full benefits of the restorative yoga practice. The tension before and during the yoga practice will be replaced by the ultimate relaxation which restorative yoga poses bring, so it is advised to be persistent and dedicated.