Written by Katlyn Eriksen
Can meditation help you lucid dream?
What connection could yoga practice and meditation have with lucid dreaming? In this article you will learn how to lucid dream through meditation, as well as how you can improve your yoga ability while you sleep!
What is a lucid dream?
Lucid dreaming is the ability to become consciously self-aware during a dream, so that you realise that you are dreaming. Once you have reached this state of awareness it is possible to manipulate and control what happens in your dream. For many people this happens spontaneously, but it is possible to actually self-induce a lucid dream as we will see.
The link between lucid dreaming, meditation and cognition
Lucid dreaming was officially accepted by the scientific community back in 1970, and since then it has been subject to various studies and research. Some interesting findings indicate that there are links between lucid dreaming, meditation and cognition, people who meditate tend to lucid dream more often and have better dream recall.
Lucid dreaming - a type of ‘sleeping meditation’
Also, people who meditate or lucid dream, or both are more likely to have a cognitive learning style known as ‘field independence’ which defines the ability to be able to separate detail from the context. Individuals that are skilled at this are typically able to learn in a more independent and self-guided way.
The findings suggest that lucid dreams could be thought of as a type of sleeping meditation. So if you are someone that meditates regularly, studies show that you are more likely to lucid dream as well as possess the independent cognitive learning style.
How to lucid dream through meditation
It is also possible to lucid dream while awake during meditation. There are many guided meditations that have been designed to help people induce a lucid dream state while meditating.
The first step is to reach a state of deep calm and relaxation, where you are far removed from any daily thoughts or concerns. Once in this state, the next step is to create a vivid imaginary world in your mind, and to firmly root yourself in it with all of your senses engaged.
Creating a vivid imaginary world
If the setting for your imaginary world is on the beach near the ocean, you should be ale to feel the sand underneath your feet, or the wind blowing in your face, hear the waves crashing against the rocks smell the salt in the air. Once you are fully immersed in this imaginary dream world it is possible to mentally disassociate from your body and initiate a lucid dream from there.
Lucid dreaming and yoga
Research shows that it is possible to learn and improve various different motor skills while lucid dreaming. The sensorimotor cortox which is a neural mechanism responsible for creating physical movement, responds not just to real life movement, but to imagined or dreamed movement too, and this imagined or dreamed movement results in actual learning.
This means that practicing a certain motor skill while you sleep will show real life improvements in that skill when you are awake! Amazing right? So if you are in the process of learning a tricky new yoga pose such as a head stand, peacock pose or shoulder-pressing-pose, practicing these manoeuvres while asleep will result in real life improvements. While it isn’t as effective as practicing while you are awake of course, it is still better than no practice at all.
Written by Sadie Anderson
Starting your day off right is important, and with stretching and quality exercise techniques, you can receive several benefits from an early morning workout. Yoga is highly recommended as a morning option, with the movement helping your body boost energy levels and awaken your mind. Add in a little meditation and you have the perfect recipe for a morning exercise routine.
Yoga offers users many rewards, from alleviating lower back pain to strengthening your balance and posture. Here are a few more positives of morning yoga exercise below.
1. Strengthens Your Focus
With a short routine of yoga poses in the morning, you can begin the awakening process off right. Not only will you be able to clear your mind, you’ll get to slightly get your heart rate up and improve your concentration. Poses that involve one leg balancing, such as the Tree pose, are especially helpful as they force you to wake up and prepare your brain for the day
2. Boosts Energy Levels
With the movement of yoga, the cells in the body get going; this is because they receive fresh oxygen as they move through your body right along with the yoga poses, allowing your circulation to increase and your body to feel invigorated. Sun salutations are a great way to get the body moving and to boost your energy levels for the day.
3. Tones Your Body
With morning yoga exercise, you’ll be able to tone your body over time. It will slowly begin to change shape as your back grows stronger and your arms become more toned and defined. You may even drop sizes as the yoga poses help to strengthen your body’s core via regular practice.
4. Reduces the Need for Caffeine
For many, caffeine is a requirement in the mornings to feel awake and ready for the workday. With yoga, you can easily cut back on your caffeine intake as the movements of the exercise begin to get your body warmed up. The poses will help your body feel more awake and alert and, slowly but surely, you might be able to ditch the coffee altogether.
5. Improves Flexibility
If you sit in an office chair all day, your body becomes stiff and you may find it hard to move at the end of the day. By completing yoga poses in the morning, you can improve your flexibility. The more consistent you are with this, the more flexible you’ll notice your body becoming. Particular areas will begin to become more flexible, including the hips, hamstrings, shoulders, and back.
Waking up and starting the day can be tough. By doing yoga in the morning, there are several ways to improve your body and mind. With regular practice, you’ll be able to move better, gain more energy, and have a clear and focused mind to start the day. Begin by trying a few simple poses in the morning after you wake. Over time, you can add in more difficult poses, toning the body and benefiting from the soothing nature of yoga moves.
Morning Classes at 532YOGA vary, but start as early as 6:00am!