The Yoga of Being Rather than Doing
Restorative yoga involves passive stretching of the entire body while it is supported by pillows, bolsters, blankets, or other props. During this process the spine is moved in all directions, and the organs are alternately stimulated and soothed. Restorative yoga facilitates relaxation and restful sleep.
Poses include forward bends, back bends, and gentle spinal twists. Some poses and sequences have an overall benefit while others focus on specific areas. These include the chest (supporting the heart and lungs), the abdominal cavity (assisting the abdominal organ system), and the legs (facilitating movement of blood and other bodily fluids by changing the legs’ relationship to gravity). All create physiological responses that benefit overall health and promote a feeling of well-being.
Classes can be tailored to specific needs such as high blood pressure, headaches, digestive issues, immune system support, menstrual cycle symptoms or irregularities, nervousness, insomnia, and other ailments.
The development of these poses is credited to B.K.S. Iyengar.