fbpx ;

Away to a Yoga Dreamland of Peace and Wonder

yoga nidra

When I got an email from my gym about a special class featuring yoga, Tibetan singing bowls and meditation, I barely hesitated. I was in like Flynn. I thought it sounded sufficiently hippity-dippity, so I figured it would be something new to try and report on here. I showed up to the class with zero expectations. I didn’t know what would be involved; I was just along for the ride.

When I walked in, the room was dimmed and everyone was gathered in a circle, with their mats centered around all of the Tibetan singing bowls. There must have been a dozen of them in various sizes. The instructor introduced herself and briefly mentioned “yoga nidra” and “played” a few of the bowls so we would know what to expect. Any expectations of difficult yoga were out the door when she said that yoga nidra was akin to “sleep yoga” and said that we would basically be in savasna the whole time. If I hadn’t been trying to settle into the peaceful vibe of the class, I might have jumped for joy. There’s not a whole lot of peace in my household with three kids 5 and under.

After just a couple of seated yoga postures, we were told to get comfy lying on our backs in corpse pose. The instructor then led us through the most wonderful meditation practice I’ve ever experienced. Granted, I haven’t done a lot of formal instructor-led meditation, but this was … transformative.

She would chime a Tibetan singing bowl as she walked around, guiding us through a progressive relaxation of sorts with imagery and self-awareness and visualization. We set an intention and then let her take us through the practice. At one point, I couldn’t tell if I was awake or asleep — it was like I was hypnotized or in a trance — it was certainly a deeper meditative state than I’ve ever experienced. Like sleep, but with awareness of your body, but in such a zone you feel like you’ve time traveled.

The 90-minute class passed much more quickly than I ever would have imagined, and when I sat up, all I could think was, “What just happened!?” I told my neighboring yogi that I didn’t know if I’d been awake or asleep and that I’d felt like I was both at the same time.

Of course, as soon as I got in bed that night, I hit up Google for more on yoga nidra. In my reading, I gathered that it is essentially a state of conscious deep sleep. You leave the waking state, go right past the dreaming stage and go to a state of deep sleep while you’re awake. As I was reading, I was like, “THAT IS WHAT HAPPENED TO ME!” I’m sure had I known what I was getting into, the effect would have been the same, but having had no expectations or knowledge of yoga nidra beforehand made the experience even more powerful for me. Pure. I wasn’t talking my body or mind into something I wanted to experience — I truly got there on my own. Well, with the guidance of the soothing words of the instructor and the hypnotic sounds of the bowls, of course.

Yoga nidra was a fast track to relaxation and restoration. I felt like I’d had the best kind of power nap — one that left me with a greater sense of purpose and awareness, one that didn’t leave me groggy. One that left me with a great appreciation for the power of the mind. Weeks later, I’m still raving about it. I can’t wait until I can take another class to recapture the magic.

Have you ever done yoga nidra? Did you have a powerful experience?Erin

FTC disclosure: We often receive products from companies to review. All thoughts and opinions are always entirely our own. Unless otherwise stated, we have received no compensation for our review and the content is purely editorial. Affiliate links may be included. If you purchase something through one of those links we may receive a small commission. Thanks for your support!