Yoga Poses for Overcoming Depression

Submitted by Kevin Pederson on March 5, 2012

Yoga is beneficial in many ways and doing yoga for depression is just one of them. Depression can creep upon a person gradually. There could be many reasons for depression - stress, a new job, a new home, illness, death of a loved one or even aging. Yoga is a good way to combat depression. There are several yoga poses that help to relieve tension and improve one's mood.

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Doing yoga for depression can change one's thoughts and emotions. Certain postures in yoga help to promote the production of hormones which in turn lead to positive feelings and a definite mood change. Yoga also helps to improve the circulation throughout the body and renews one's energy and uplifts one's spirit.


A yoga sequence for depression would be one that involves a great deal of gentle asanas (poses), pranayama (breathing practices) and meditation. The breathing techniques incorporated in yoga help one to bring large amounts of oxygen to the brain and other parts of the body. This in turn helps to release all the negative energy one has. Breathing is critical to yoga. Remember to breathe out naturally during each posture and not forcefully. Breathing properly helps to control and relax the body and mind. Besides this would then lead to the process of inner peace and healing.

Some poses that are beneficial while doing yoga for depression are:-

  1. Simhasana (The Lion Pose)
  2. Matsyasana (The Fish Pose)
  3. Virabhadrasana I (Warrior I)
  4. Balasana (The Child's Pose)
  5. Savasana (Corpse Pose)
  6. Sethu Bandha (Bridge Pose)
  7. Sarvangasanas (Shoulder Stand)
  8. Udhrva Dhanurasana (Upward Bow or Wheel Pose)
  9. Surya Namaskar (Sun Salutation)
  10. Nadi Sodhana Pranayma (Alternate Nostril Breathing)
  11. Bharamari Pranayam (Humming Breath)
  12. Kaplabhati Pranayam
  13. Halasana (The Plough Pose)
  14. Supta Vajrasana (Reclining Adamant Pose)
  15. Viparita Karani (Legs Up The Wall Pose)
  16. Padahastasana (Hands to Feet Pose)

The above poses should only be performed after consulting one's general practitioner. It is best to go to an experienced yoga teacher who would formulate a yoga sequence keeping in mind that the poses are needed to relieve depression. Keep in mind that yoga works on the foundation that one's body is made up of negative energy centers and these need to be activated in order for the negative energy to be released. A proper yoga teacher would also help in teaching you breathing exercises which if performed along with the yoga postures. This will provide great help to free the person from depression.

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