Why sometimes after yoga for example you feel a surge of strength and energy, and sometimes – deep relaxation and peace. How it works? One of the quickly achievable effects of yoga is the effect on the nervous system.

Consider two divisions of the autonomic nervous system (ANS) – sympathetic and parasympathetic.

The sympathetic nervous system (SNS) is responsible for the processes of activation and arousal and turns on under stress (at which point you become active and ready to act). They call it Hit and Run. The parasympathetic nervous system (PSNS), on the other hand, is responsible for the processes of inhibition, relaxation and tranquility and is called “Eat and Sleep”.

Different yoga techniques can affect ANS activity in different ways. Knowing which of them and how they affect, you can build your home practice according to your state.

Activating techniques (SNS):
– active, sharp breathing – kapalabhati and bhastrika,
– a sharp shortened exhalation,
– dynamic practices – Surya Namaskar,
– long-term fixation in power asanas,
– breath holding – kumbhaki,
– breathing through the right nostril – Surya Bhedana,
– abdominal manipulations – agnisara-dhauti and nauli,
– deflections.

Relaxation Techniques (PSNS):
– slow, deep breathing – ujjayi, full of yoga,
– prolonged exhalation – visama-vritti,
– relaxation techniques – yoga nidra and savasana,
– simple asanas with short fixation,
– breathing through the left nostril – Chandra Bhedana,
– slopes,
– energy locks / bandhas – mula, jalandhara, uddiyana,
– inverted asanas,
– impact on the eyeballs – yoni mudra and trataka.

Keep this note for yourself and try not to do dynamic practices with a predominance of backbends before bed.

!IMPORTANT! If you are a beginner practitioner, it is best to learn and practice yoga exercises and new techniques under the guidance of an experienced yoga teacher.