Recent medical studies have shown that a regular practice of yoga and meditation is effective at lowering levels of anxiety. Excessive anxiety can be alleviated through a slow, gentle yoga practice focusing on postures that calm the heart and the mind, balance the emotions, and release body tension.
The practice of Dirga and Nadi Sodhana Pranayamas will be the most strongly calming to the body. If there is excess heat in the body, with symptoms of agitation, restlessness, impatience, craving, compulsions and poor sleep, then Sit Cari and Shitali pranayamas will be helpful as well.
Meditation reduces stress, calms the mind and helps reduce thoughts of fear and worry. Use one of the following by itself and/or at the beginning and end of your yoga practice: Yoga Meditation, Heart Chakra Meditation, Mantra Meditation.
Anxiety and Panic Healing Center
NIMH Anxiety Disorders PDF booklet
Yoga is not a substitute for conventional western medication; please consult your medical professional before starting a yoga practice.
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