With winter approaching, the weather clearly isn’t as nice. As a result, many people don’t get outside as much as they would during the spring, summer and fall months. The lack of sunshine during the winter often causes the brain to work harder and produce an excessive amount of melatonin, which is a hormone linked to depression. You may be familiar with this type of depression for it is known as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). The good news is that if you begin feeling the winter blues, there are things you can do to combat these feelings of sadness and depression.

Treating the Winter Blues

Some people suffering from the winter blues may decide to take an antidepressant or mood stabilizing medication while others, may go a more natural route by meeting with a psychologist, participating in light therapy or using exercise as a way to cope and improve their feelings. Exercise is an excellent resource for when dealing with depression and anxiety because physical activity helps release feel-good endorphins while taking your mind off of unnecessary worries. 

Regularly exercising is a healthy way to cope with feelings that also enables you to gain confidence and increase social interaction. If looking for specific exercise classes to help combat feelings of depression and anxiety, consider attending a yoga class.

Yoga for Depression

According to this post to TIME Health, there was a study conducted by Boston University proving that attending a yoga class at least twice a week can help alleviate depression. With that being said, you should note that the more yoga you participate in, the better the effects it will have. In fact, people that participated in one extra class per week had a lower depression score than those that attended classes less frequently.

 

Participating in yoga for winter blues works because the exercises along with the deep breathing help to balance out your autonomic nervous system and when this system is in balance, the rest of your brain works better. Participating in yoga is sometimes enough to combat the winter blues but can also be used in conjunction with other therapies.

If you are looking to attend yoga classes in or around Petaluma, California, the Redwood Club offers a variety of different types of yoga classes including:

Hatha Flow Yoga

This Hatha-style yoga class accommodates all fitness levels. The emphasis of this class is on the constant flow of yoga movements while focusing on proper posture and alignment.

Interactive Yoga

During this exercise class, you will use focused movements to connect your mind, body and spirit.

Vinyasa Flow

In this class, you will practice a series of postures linked together while utilizing your breath. This class uses movement, meditation and breath to create a continuous flow of postures.

Vital Yoga

This Hatha-style yoga class focuses on breathing exercises, so you are practicing “yoga from the inside out.”

Yogic Breath Workshop with Simone

Breathing during yoga is like the thread that holds the tapestry together so, in this workshop, you will practice easy breath rhythms while doing yoga postures.

For a full list of exercise classes and times, check out the Redwood Club Group Exercise Schedule.