Bed Yoga

Being grateful for discovering the wonderful world of yummy bed yoga:

I’ve written a few times about how yoga has been a huge part of my life for many years now (see here, here, and here).

When I’m practicing regularly, I feel its amazing benefits on my mind, body and spirit. I feel calmer and more present, I feel stronger and more flexible, my posture is better, my sleep improves, and it makes my heart smile so big.

I’ve also found that regular practice helps ward off my lower back pain. And not hearing a peep from my lower back is a great incentive to keep rolling out the mat alone!

However, one of the most frustrating aspects of this debilitating and rollercoaster of a ride called Chronic Fatigue Syndrome – and of that there are many – is that it’s not always possible to practice daily or weekly, or sometimes even monthly.

As this health condition forces me to be pretty much sedentary most of the time, after a while I can feel my lower back pain starting to edge its way back.

So I try to get back on the mat, if it’s possible. But sometimes, actually most of the time, the mere thought of getting up, moving things around so I can fit my yoga mat in my bedroom, and putting on one of my yoga DVDs on makes me feel exhausted before I’ve even started!

And so I push the idea away, and hope my lower back pain goes away soon. But it never does and I usually have to wait until I feel up to a light yoga session.

Thankfully I’ve come to realise that yoga doesn’t have to be a big, long, challenging session. It can also be short and sweet and super gentle.

Especially now I’ve discovered I came across bed yoga.

WooHooooooo!! What a utterly brilliant revelation!

I found it by accident while browsing through youtube for gently yoga sessions, and discovered bed yoga was an actual thing. It’s literally gentle stretching you can do while lying on, or even in, your bed.

How marvellous!

And so I decided to give it a go. No pressure. If it was too much, I’d thank myself for trying and put bed yoga away for another day.

Thankfully, I’m finding the short’n’sweet sessions sublimely gentle and better still, I can usually manage them.

Despite feeling exhausted and wiped out, it feels so good to gently stretch my body before bedtime, easing my back pain and easing me into sleep.

So I’ve decided to try another #YogaEveryDamnDay in May.

May Yoga Challenge.png

I loved the first one I did about 18 months ago and want to get myself back into a regular practice.

IMPORTANT NOTE TO SELF: I give myself permission to skip a day or two or three if I don’t feel well enough.

Not only this gentle practice help keep my sore back at bay, I know that it will keep my spirits high, my mind at peace, and my body nourished as I continue on this healing journey from CFS.



For anyone interested in trying some gentle bed yoga sessions, here are a few I’ve found and enjoyed so far:

1. Bed Yoga by Aroga Yoga (specially created for people living with chronic illnesses and pain)

Bed yoga aroga.png

2. 10 Minute Gentle Yoga in Bed by Candace (she has quite a few lovely videos)

Bed Yoga by candace .png

3. 10 minute Bed Yoga for Beginners by Sjana Earp (I want her bed cover set!)

bed yoga sjana.png

4. Bed Time Yoga to Help You Sleep by Dashama (she always makes me smile and also have a great session for lower back pain)

Bed yoga Dashama.png

5. Bedtime Yoga for Deep Sleep by Siya Yoga (this is really soothing)

bed yoga siya .png
If you find know of or find any different bed yoga sessions, I’d love to hear from you – please leave a comment below…

Day 71: Yoga every damn day!

Being grateful, mindful and kind as I embark on 30 days of yoga:


This is my third post about one of my most treasured rituals, and why not, it deserves it: yoga is an integral part of my life, my wellbeing and my healing journey.

I find stretching my body with a yoga session wonderfully delicious, and even more so with all the bed rest I currently have to take. I also find it soothing and peaceful for my mind and soul, and it’s another opportunity to practice mindfulness.

Not being able to practice as much as I used to has been one of the frustrating things about having CFS. Due to the nature of the condition, my practice is quite sporadic as I sometimes simply don’t have the energy, or my neck is feeling too painful from when I sustained a severe whiplash injury a couple of years ago.

Over the last few months, I’ve been able to get back on the mat which has lifted my spirits no end. And recently, I’ve even managed to go to a couple of classes and would love to build up slowly to attending regularly. But all in good time.

In a good week, I’m managing to enjoy two very gentle sessions at home, alternating between my two favourite short practices on DVD. But lately I’ve been feeling a little bored with my practice as I know them off by heart.

I think it’s time to shake things up a little.

And I’m feeling optimistic that my body can handle a teeny bit more 😊.

And I’m loving the gorgeously inspiring Rachel Brathen’s mantra: “Yoga Every Damned Day”.

yoga every damn day

(And yes, I want the tee-shirt!)

Sooooo, I’ve decided to try and make November ’30 Days of Yoga’.

After some googling, I’ve found a lovely online teacher called Erin Motz who offers a free 30 day yoga challenge. It’s “30 days of yoga in 10-20 minute long online video sessions which we send you directly to your email inbox one day at a time.” Which sounds perfect for my limited energy levels.

I like that there’s a different focus for each day’s session; day 2 is for chest and shoulders, day 3 is for posture, day 4 is for abs, and so on.

I’ve signed up, I’ve pimped up my yoga mat, and I’m ready to go.

mu pimped up yoga mat

I am giving myself permission to skip a day or two if I need to – if my CFS symptoms are too intense, or if my neck is too sore. But I’m really hoping I can try and attempt each day’s session.

And if not, I will see if I can manage a sun salutation or even one little downward dog! And if not, I will at least be able to meditate.

No pressure, no worries, all is well.

So with this in mind, my happy for today is being grateful for my yoga practice, being mindful as I roll out my mat every damn day this month, and being kind to my body by doing lots of yummy stretching.

Day 12: Back on the mat

Being grateful for my first yoga class in two years:

I am so excited. I’ve just attended my first yoga class in two years. Yay!

And it felt sooooooo good.

Sadly, I haven’t felt well enough since chronic fatigue set in. My beloved practice has been one of the biggest activities I’ve missed. I used to practice yoga most days either at home or at the fantastic yoga studio I was a member of in Sydney. It had the most incredible teachers and I used to go to three 90 minute yoga classes a week.

Over the last few months I’ve been slowly easing myself back into yoga by following a couple of gentle 20 minute DVD sessions at home.

While I enjoy home practice, I do like combining it with classes.  It’s not a surprise that I find that teachers challenge me more than I’m prepared to challenge myself at home. I also appreciate the variety of asanas – poses – even those I’m not particularly fond of and tend to avoid at home. Teachers have told me it’s the ones we resist are the ones we need to focus on!! Hmmmm…

Recently I’ve been feeling ready to step up my practice by trying out a yoga class. After some searching, I’m grateful to have found one one really close to home. Like 5 mins away close. The only downside is that it’s in the evening, when my energy is usually waning, but I was keen to give it a try.

As the time for me to leave grew nearer, my trepidation increased: Would I find the venue ok? Would I manage the whole class? What if it was all too much? What if I felt unwell? What would teacher Hannah be like? What would the other yogini’s be like?

Ok, Helen, breathe deeply with me now….

Finally it was time to go.

Of course, I found the venue ok, the other yogini’s were lovely, and teacher Hannah was friendly and kind.

Happily I rolled out my mat and I felt I’d come home.

Starting in savasana  – corpse pose – Hannah gently led us into mindful breathing and introduced this week’s theme, Satya, the commitment to Truthfulness.

Gently guiding us through an hour long class, she threw in a couple of the more challenging poses for good measure and to a few giggles. Just as I felt myself starting to flag and was preparing to rest in balasana – child’s pose – the class began to wind down and we were back in savasana. Sigh.

I left feeling stretched, calm, and happy in my mind, body and soul.

I am really also proud of myself for going as it was a big step in my recovery journey.

Roll on next Tuesday.

So with this in mind, my happy for today is being grateful for my first yoga class in two years.