Concentration is your ability to focus your attention on a thought which may be generated in your mind on its own, or as a result of input from your sense organs. For example, while studying, you may want to pay full attention to the text that you are reading from your book, or to the lecture being delivered in your class.
However, most of us have limited attention spans and we experience gaps of inattentivness, even while doing serious work, due to which the quality of our work suffers. This is the reason concentration is important and those who are deficient in it, should try to improve it. You can improve your power of concentration by performing simple yoga exercises.
Yoga Techniques To Improve Concentration
Anjali Mudra (Salutation Seal)
Anjali Mudra is a simple yoga exercise that is performed in a sitting position. Sit cross-legged on the floor and hold your hands in a salutation pose (Indian prayer pose). Breathe in and breathe out calmly, focusing completely on your breathing. Perform this exercise for about 15-20 minutes every day.
Nadi Shodhan Pranayama (Alternate Nostril Breathing)
Nadi Shodhan Pranayama, which is a systematic breathing exercise, provides a soothing effect to your entire mind by aerating your lungs deeply and cleansing your body off all toxins, thereby setting the conditions for improved concentration. Sit cross-legged on the floor with your spine straight and eyes closed.
Take a slow and deep breath. Now, close your right nostril with your thumb and exhale through your left nostril. Now inhale through the same nostril, then shut it with your ring finger and exhale through your right nostril. This completes one cycle of breathing. Start the next cycle, by inhaling through your right nostril and closing it with your thumb while exhaling through your left nostril. This exercise can be performed for 15 minutes.
Paschimottasana (Seated Forward Bend)
Paschimottasana is a simple exercise to perform. It basically involves bending of your body forward and trying to touch your toes with your finger tips. Sit with your legs stretched out and with your spine straight on the floor. Raise your hands while inhaling. While exhaling, bend forward at your hips and try to touch your toes with your fingers.
This pose will require you to rest your head on your legs. Providing strength to the nervous system is one of the benefits of this asana, which in turn results in alleviating nervous disorders of the body thereby calming the mind and consequently improving concentration.
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Vrikshasana (Tree Stand Pose)
Vrikshasana makes you assume the shape of a tree while performing it. This pose requires you to stand on one leg and balance your body weight while you bend the other leg and place it on the leg on which you balance. You can hold your hands in salutation (Indian prayer pose) while performing this exercise or hold them over your head in the same pose.
Stand straight with your feet apart, bend your right leg at the knee and place it on your left leg, while holding your hands in prayer position. Trying to maintain your balance will make you concentrate on balancing, which in turn will improve your concentration.
Ustrasana (Camel Pose)
Ustrasana is a simple exercise to perform. Sit on your knees and place your hands on your hips. Bend your body backwards in an arch. Gently, hang your head at the back.
You can also try to hold your feet with your body arched backwards. This pose relaxes the spine and neck, and improves blood flow, thus calming the mind and improving concentration.
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