Yoga for Depression (are you feeling SAD?)

“the severe pain and the great trials we go through teach us the real essence of great joy” ― Ernest Agyemang Yeboah

When Winter comes and bathes the world in its icy grasp, it’s important to remember that Spring is always just around the corner. Until it comes, there are many ways to lift your spirits.

Yoga poses that get the body moving and your energy flowing can be a great way to combat feeling drained and a loss of interest in activities.

There are a multitude of reasons someone might begin a regimen of yoga for depression--but one of the most pertinent at this particular time of year is to combat Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). About 4 to 6 % of people experience it annually, but it is speculated that another 10 to 20 % experience it in a mild form. Regular sessions can help make SAD more manageable.

Regular sessions can help make Seasonal Affective Disorder more manageable.

Many of my students have tried yoga for depression and have found it to work quite well. There’s something about losing yourself in the rhythm of a vinyasa that feels positively vital and uplifting.

yoga for depression

Regular yoga sessions can help with many health problems including seasonal affective disorder

Yoga can also bring us to a place where we are able to think more clearly. With more abundant joy and appreciation for all that life brings us. Yoga for depression fits this desire to look inward and find the answers the universe has to counter your nagging questions and fulfill your deepest desires.

If you’re feeling irritable, a little more moody than normal, fatigued -- and it sets in every fall, it’s certainly a possibility that you are suffering from SAD. Exercises that stimulate your body as you meditate on the strong person you know you are at your core can help you feel more positive in general. If you suspect you may be suffering from SAD, I encourage you to seek support from your health care professional. 

Getting centered and getting moving are a great way to combat the winter blues.

But activity alone isn’t the sole point of most yogic practice. It’s also about what you intend to become as you undertake your craft.

Meditating and visualizing the joys in life that make you happy may also help you feel more positive and stronger.  Brain studies have shown that visualization triggers many of the same areas of the brain as actually doing an activity, and that visualizing success while actually completing workouts can be more effective than working out alone. This is a great option for people who are feeling too sick to do a yoga practice regularly. 

yoga for depression

Meditating on the brightness found in unexpected places can help you to combat winter depression

It’s amazing what can keep us motivated to stay the course. And how much that kind of motivation can lift our spirits. You can try my free videos to see if yoga for depression is helpful for you.

Let us know if there is anything you find helpful in combatting SAD in the winter months.


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  1. […] According to a study published in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, a group of participants who practised yoga and meditation for several months showed signs of decreased stress and anxiety due to increases in brain-derived neurotrophic factors (BDNF). This chemical in your body enhances memory and learning as well as decreasing inflammation and increasing immunity. Other benefits include speeding the metabolism, regulating moods, and increasing alertness and energy. Another study showed that cortisol was increased in those who practised yoga and meditation, which reduces stress levels and prevents anxiety and depression disorders. […]

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