Yoga for Anxiety disorder

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Iandromiskin
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Apr 23, 2017 1:57 am
Location: Dundalk, Ireland

Yoga for Anxiety disorder

Post by Iandromiskin »

Hi.

As an introduction I took up Yin yoga to treat a lower back injury in April 2016 and instantly fell in love with it. I loved the slow holds and mindfulness elements and am still practising. Indeed I even signed up for Yin teacher training later this year to deepen my practise.

That being said I have a problem. About four weeks ago I had a large anxiety episode that hit me out of the blue. it was illogical and irrational but I couldn't shake it and the anxiety has lingered and has started to affect my daily life in that I feel anxious every day. A doctors appointment is pending. I have suffered from depression in the past but felt over it and had no noticeable anxiety symptoms or triggers recently. This feeling just came out of nowhere.

I have read that yoga can help with anxiety but recently I have actually started to feel more anxious during yoga as I am obviously more relaxed and open than normal and in one class I even had to leave the room. I don't want to stop doing yoga and I would prefer to stay away from medication, so my question is how can I use yoga to manage or reduce my anxiety long term without fearing it will make be worse even before I arrive on my mat ???
Bernie
Posts: 1266
Joined: Sat Sep 23, 2006 2:25 am
Location: Vancouver

Yoga and anxiety

Post by Bernie »

Yes, yoga and meditation can be counter-productive for some people because it brings too much awareness to sensations/feeling that are often better left alone. Techniques like Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and Acceptance Commitment Therapy can help. Don't take therapy over the internet, however, see a trained specialist! As a bit of background, you can read some stuff I wrote about it here

With help, you will learn how to let go of the anxiety provoking thoughts and feelings and replace them with healthier thoughts and attention.

Good luck!
Bernie
Iandromiskin
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Apr 23, 2017 1:57 am
Location: Dundalk, Ireland

Post by Iandromiskin »

Hi Bernie,

Thanks for your reply. Knowledgeable as always �. I was at my GP (doctor) today and it turns out my blood pressure is a bit elevated, so a course of low mg medication and blood tests was prescribed. Is it ok to practise Yin with slightly high BP and if so which positions are beneficial ?
Bernie
Posts: 1266
Joined: Sat Sep 23, 2006 2:25 am
Location: Vancouver

Post by Bernie »

The only contraindication for high blood pressure would be postures where the head is below the heart: in Yin Yoga that would mean avoid inversions like Snail pose. The heart meridian runs from the little finger and along the arm and shoulder, so arm work with postures may be beneficial, from a Traditional Chinese Medicine point of view. Sarah Powers book, Insight Yoga has some good information on Yin Yoga for the heart meridian. You can find some other suggestions in my article Yin Yoga for the Upper Body.

From a Western point of view, cardiovascular work is also good for the heart (fast walks, etc.)

Cheers
Bernie
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