Yawning is an often overlooked, yet contagious and effective reflex to relax. It activates the parasympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for the body’s rest and digestion response. This exercise therefore focuses on the benefits of yawning to relax the mind and the body.
Begin this exercise by opening your mouth and relaxing your lower jaw and tongue. Then lift your palate to allow an ‘O’ shape to form in the back of your mouth. Begin to move your lower jaw from side to side and invite a yawn on your next inhale while keeping your shoulders relaxed. If it feels good, gently stretch your arms over your head. Take a moment to see if your mind and body feels different than before doing this exercise.