‘Nidra’ is the Sanskrit word for sleep. At its simplest level the practice of yoga nidra facilitates a state of profound physical and mental relaxation which restores energy and promotes healing. Ultimately, yoga nidra is a process of self-enquiry which can lead to personal transformation and spiritual growth.
Whilst the origins of yoga nidra lie in the ancient traditions of Yoga and Tantra the practice has been refined and developed in the twentieth century incorporating insights from contemporary psychology and neurology. Research on the therapeutic effects of yoga nidra suggests that it can help reduce levels of anxiety and stress; improve quality of sleep; alleviate stress-related illness such as headaches, digestive and breathing problems; and facilitate the effective management of chronic pain.
Through the exquisite practice of Yoga Nidra, I discovered an unshakable equilibrium that is present under all circumstances and situations.’(Richard Miller)
Yoga Nidra classes last for 60 minutes. They begin with simple joint-freeing exercises to release tension from the body and encourage the free flow of breath in preparation for yoga nidra. For yoga nidra, students lie comfortably on the floor and follow a series of instructions that encourage relaxation, sense withdrawal, concentration and meditation. The practice lasts 20-30 minutes and may include bringing awareness to sounds, bodily sensations and the flow of the breath as well as guided visualisation. The basic structure and elements of yoga nidra are explained during the classes and students are given recordings for use at home to help develop a regular practice.