Every day after you wake up, the health of your body sets the tone for the day. Any ailment in the body can put a damper on your enthusiasm and become a hindrance in performing daily tasks. Many yoga asanas can help you stay physically healthy, but that’s not the only prerequisite for holistic well-being. Your mental health is equally crucial.
Your brain plays a phenomenal role in carrying out daily tasks. Your ability to respond, comprehend, perceive and function well is related to the health of your brain.
Most of us do not realize that, like every other organ in the body, the brain needs nourishment and energy every day. Just as exercise keeps the body in good shape, brain exercises do the same for the intelligence powerhouse. Yoga asanas, in particular, aid in the better functioning of the human body.
Yoga asanas and pranayama for an efficient brain
Yoga is a science that harnesses the innate capability of the body to improve its powers and functioning. It can act as an instant cognitive boost. It helps relieve stress, which enhances the operation of the brain. Also, breathing through the left nostril activates the right brain and vice versa. Super brain yoga is a series of simple yoga poses that are becoming increasingly popular among professionals and educators.
Here are some pranayamas and yoga asanas for a more effecient brain:
Bhramari Pranayama (Bee Breathing)
Benefits of Bhramari Pranayama.
- Releases negative emotions like anger, agitation, frustration, and anxiety.
- Improves concentration and memory.
- Builds confidence.
Paschimottanasana (Seated Forward Bend)
- Stretches the spine and helps relieve stress.
- Relaxes the mind by removing negative emotions like irritability and anger.
Read more about Paschimottanasana.
Setu Bandhasana (Bridge Pose)
- Strengthens and stretches the neck and spine.
- Relaxes tight muscles.
- Improves blood circulation to the brain.
- Helps calm the brain and the nervous system, thereby reducing anxiety, stress, and depression.
Learn more about Setu bandhasana
Sarvangasana (Shoulder Stand)
Benefits of Sarvangasana.
- Regulates and normalizes the functioning of the thyroid and parathyroid glands.
- Nourishes the brain as more blood reaches the pineal and hypothalamus glands.
- Helps improve all cognitive functions.
Halasana (Plow Pose)
Learn how to do Halasana.
- Helps improve blood flow to the brain and calm the nervous system.
- Stretches the back and neck, reducing stress and fatigue.
How to do Super Brain Yoga
- Stand tall and straight with your arms by your side.
- Lift your left arm and hold your right earlobe with your thumb and index finger. Your thumb should be in front.
- Lift your right arm and hold your left earlobe. Your right arm should be over your left arm.
- Inhale deeply and squat down slowly to a sitting position.
- Stay in this position for 2-3 seconds.
- Gently exhale as you rise again. This completes one cycle.
- You may repeat this cycle about 15 times every day.
Benefits of Super Brain Yoga
Super Brain Yoga activates acupuncture points on the earlobe that stimulate your gray matter. This exercise helps your brain by:
- Synchronizing the left and right sides of the brain.
- Distributing energy levels and inducing calmness.
- Stimulating thinking capacity.
- Increasing mental energy.
- Making you more creative.
- Developing cognitive powers.
- Improving focus, concentration and memory power.
- Boosting decision-making skills.
- Relieving stress or behavioural problems.
- Making you more psychologically balanced.
This brain exercise is known to help patients with Alzheimer’s, mild depression, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Down’s syndrome, autism, and dyslexia among others. You could also follow-up this exercise with a session of guided meditation.
Increase brain power with meditation
According to a 2011 study led by a team of Harvard-affiliated researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital, participating in an eight-week meditation program makes measurable changes in brain regions associated with memory, sense of self, empathy, and stress.
Meditation is associated with a thicker cerebral cortex and more grey matter. These are the parts of the brain linked to memory, attention span, decision-making, and learning. Thus, meditation is a means to increase brain power.
So, yoga asanas, super brain yoga, breathing, and meditation can all stimulate your brain power. Spare some time every day and lead a smarter life!