iRest: Integrative Restoration Yoga Nidra for Deep Relaxation

Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fascinating course My family and I are really enjoying this course. We only purchased it a couple of weeks ago, but are already seeing the benefits. The course is well structured, and I like the way the tutor explains the science behind it all.
Date published: 2019-04-15
Rated 1 out of 5 by from the opposite of relaxing I was eager to begin this highly rated course and learning its relaxation techniques. However, 20 minutes into lecture #1, I had to pull the plug. The instructor indeed has a soothing VOICE; however, her incessant, protracted enunciation of EVERY 'S' sound was grating. Various attempts to minimize the hiss were unsuccessful aside from successfully amping up my annoyance. Upon contacting The Teaching Company, their satisfaction guarantee was immediately honored.
Date published: 2019-02-07
Rated 1 out of 5 by from The title, to me, is misleading. I was looking for a yoga course that had relaxation exercises and stretches. This is a course in meditation and should be advertised as such. I have an excellent mindfulness meditation course from The Great Courses. I didn't need another one. I feel I wasted my money buying this. I would recommend this course to someone who needs to learn how to meditate but definitely not if they're looking for a yoga course.
Date published: 2019-02-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Life changing!! I started practicing iRest after receiving personal instruction from Molly at an iRest Retreat. I decided to purchase her teachings digitally because there is so much wisdom that she shares without repeating herself. She is a gifted teacher with a very soothing voice. My kids love it because I have become a peaceful parent. I am currently teaching iRest to combat veterans with chronic Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. They love it because they are finding freedom from being reactive to so many stressors that normally cause them to behave in ways they feel bad about. Everything you want to know about iRest is in this series of teachings. Buy it, watch it and be transformed by it in miraculous ways!!
Date published: 2018-11-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing course, amazing instructor! I had the privilege of meeting Molly a couple years ago at a yoga festival. She is absolutely wonderful and her work is not only groundbreaking, but truly healing people. This course is nothing short of amazing! Her light truly shines through!
Date published: 2018-11-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Integrative Restoration Yoga Nidra For Deep Relaxa I bought this a month ago. I have enjoyed the first few segments. I am able to follow and enjoy with great results
Date published: 2018-11-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Yoga Nidra 4 DVD’s plus book I received the 4 dvd’s and book a few days ago. I was expecting dvd’s with an instructor-guided transition into the practice of Yoga Nidra. What I received instead was a philosophy developed by the presenter which gave me a new way to frame my thoughts actions and reactions as I live in a very chaotic city environment. Although, I was expecting a yoga practice set of dvds, I received a new way to frame every moment in my life so that I may stay as an observer. This practice allows me to look at the positive and negative sides of my experience and stay unattached to any result. I’m then free to decide what is best for me without rage, sadness or discontent. A side effect of this new meditative thinkstyle is deep relaxation, joy, peaceful sleep and creativity. Decisions I make are from my deepest inner wisdom. Thus I have a stress free mind
Date published: 2018-11-07
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Annoying Yakety-Yak Not what I was looking for. The instructor's voice is far from restful. The program is too much talking, not enough restful yoga. I have returned it.
Date published: 2018-11-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Such a great course on iRest I bought this over a month ago and am using it regularly. I have listened to all the lectures which were so well done and I’m continuing to use the iRest practices. I have taken inperson IRest workshops and I found Molly’s presentation, style, tone of voice to be more engaging than some of the teachers I have studied with in person. Would highly recommend the course.
Date published: 2018-10-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Real and Transformative This meditation practice, though simple to follow and do, thanks to excellent content, well organized and clearly delivered, is profound in it effects. I've been meditating for decades and this is by far the most enjoyable and helpful way to experience and work with deep and subtle states of self-awareness (and Self awareness). Although designed to be a secular practice, iRest remains true to the yogic principals on which is based. The lectures and practice are not bogged down with excess scientific facts or yogic beliefs; however enough of both are included to provide validity and context, so that the goals and purpose of the practice are clear as bells. However, this is course is not an intellectual exercise, benefiting the thinking mind only. It's designed to be experienced. If you listen and follow along, the benefits will be both immediate and numerous. There is no fumbling about in your mind wondering, "Am I doing this right?" There is no waiting for years or months or even weeks to know if you've progressed in some important way. You WILL gain greater emotional control, you WILL know the peace of your Witness Self, and you WILL cope more effectively in your day-to-day life in very short order.
Date published: 2018-09-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Yoga Nidra restoration I bought this a couple of months ago & have only listened to the lectures. But just listening I have felt a shift in the way I feel & am looking forward to performing the practices. If you have gone through trauma, this course is worth a try. There is no drudging up of painful, traumatic memories or working to "fix" anything. It's to bring you back into your body peacefully without any angst.
Date published: 2018-09-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent presentation I am a Vietnam combat veteran and was fortunate to have been mentored in a mindfulness practice early after my return from Vietnam I have found the IRest series very helpful A new path to a complex labyrinth
Date published: 2018-09-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love iRest I love how Molly introduces her lectures shares her experiences and goes through the practices. This is a lifetime of learning but take it one day at a time. Great Course!!!
Date published: 2018-08-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Molly is just great! Don´t miss it, really worthy! An excellent tool to get to know what iRest has to offer
Date published: 2018-08-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from graet information very effective meditation exercises every other class. I was very impressed. the only thing I didn't like was the disclaimer that is at the end of each class. it was very disconcerting.
Date published: 2018-08-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The easiest yet most profound way to meditate I initially discovered IREST (or what I like to call “napping” meditation because it is THAT easy to do) more than a decade ago and utilized it to support myself through a chronic illness. As a trained yoga therapist and IREST II teacher in training as well as a practitioner, I highly recommend this course. Molly has a beautiful way of explaining the IREST principles in an easy to understand manner and makes it relatable with many everyday experiences and stories as examples. This course is destined to become a classic and everyone can benefit from it. So whether you are a seasoned practitioner, a brand new beginner, or even a meditation drop-out, I encourage to give this course a go. I believe that you will find that it improves your life in ways you never could’ve imagined. There is no doubt that Molly is an expert of her topic; however it is the genuine feelings of peace, love and concern for her clients that comes across in the course that make it especially exceptional. Thank you for the gift Molly.
Date published: 2018-08-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from LIFE CHANGING Great course. Molly is outstanding and she really delivers. My life is so much better since practicing Yoga Nidra.
Date published: 2018-08-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A wonderful way to be that is accessible to all. I haven’t gotten half way through the lectures and it’s been such a blessing. Each is just long enough to use almost daily. Practices are beautiful and I definitely plan to go back and revisit several times. I really like the case notes about others , benefits, and science.
Date published: 2018-08-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from What we resist persist What a nice and beautiful course. I found the meditation practices very valuable.
Date published: 2018-08-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Title gives a good overview I have completed 18 of the 24 lectures so far. I find it to be one of the best of the many Great Courses I have listened to. What I find particularly good is the meditative practice exercises that follow her technical discussions of the concepts. It allows you to put the teachings into practice right away.
Date published: 2018-08-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love this course I am so excited to be learning iRest. It’s presented in an easy to learn format. Relaxation and all the benefits that come with it is so easy when you practice iRest.
Date published: 2018-07-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Practical and profound knowledge at once The first time I practiced Yoga Nidra with Molly Birkholm it left a deep impression on me. It was apparently simple and yet very profound. I felt very relaxed afterwards. Now with this course I can learn more about it at my own pace and bring it with me wherever I go. This is an empowering tool. I m so glad that it was made into this format to reach a broader audience and a new way to access this healthy tool for everyday life.
Date published: 2018-07-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from So grateful! As a Great Courses novice, I felt a bit overwhelmed by its vast content selection. I narrowed in on meditation, and I found iRest: Integrative Restoration Yoga Nidra for Deep Relaxation. As a newcomer, my experience could not have been better. I was delighted by the ease of the whole process. The quality, content, and value were far superior than I had envisioned, and I especially enjoyed the self-paced nature of the content. I will be back for more courses!
Date published: 2018-07-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Finding Peace in a Hectic World I meditate on a regular basis and have been aware of Irest for some time. I know Ms. Birkholm is a leading teacher/practitioner of Irest and Yoga Nidra. Meditation is so helpful in this fast-paced world. I signed up for the video program based on Ms Birkholm's reputation and have been more than happy with it. The content, visuals and presentation set a mood for learning and for your practice. Learning while doing is the optimal way to get to the next level and the Great Courses program provides exactly that. Her presentation is warm and soothing while educating the person taking the program. My personal challenge is always slowing down. If I don't, I go into a spin and that has proven to be unhealthy. This program has a lot of content and it is helping me to get to the next level which means learning to stay present and connected all day long and not just when meditating. The course is good for starters and for people who already have a practice. Peace.
Date published: 2018-07-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from True lifesaver for anxiety and trauma survivor I am so truly grateful for Ms. Birkholm’s course. As a recent trauma survivor, this course has been indespensable on my road to recovery. Many sleepless nights I have returned to the soothing, peaceful voice of Ms. Birkholm. Sleep no longer eludes me, and I continue to grow stronger every day implementing the foundations taught throughout the course. A previous reviewer, made several disparaging comments, which had me at a total loss for words. The quality and content in Ms. Birkholm’s training is unparalleled. As to the unnecessarily rude comments regarding her voice, one only need listen to a small sample of Molly’s many trainings here or on YouTube to verify that this misinformation is utter nonsense, and was done in extremely poor form. I would personally recommend this course. The relief of having the cloud of anxiety I have been living under lifted is worth its weight in gold.
Date published: 2018-07-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Inspiring and Brillianty Practical This course is a life raft of teachings about how to attune to our natural state of peace and health.. and how to return to it after wandering off. A recent cancer diagnosis made the cost of stress and the need for daily practice more than obvious. Molly Birkholm’s insights are clear and profound. Her beautiful voice makes it a total pleasure to listen to her teaching. I find the phrasing in guided meditations is both natural and sensitive... more than any teacher I have ever encountered years of meditation studies. While there are other meditation courses with shorter lectures which may be free or cheap ... I find that investing the time and energy in grounding these essential teachings through this comprehensive course is an investment in my very well-being: priceless.
Date published: 2018-07-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Course You Can Use for YEARS to come! Excellent! I started this course a couple of days ago and 'binge' watched it till the end because it was so applicable to my life. I have a lot of stress at work and kids in college. The lessons applied to nearly every aspect of my life and I kept saying, "YES!" and sending quotes to my kids. Now I'm doing the iRest practice classes, which so far are really relaxing. She gives interesting examples and I found myself doing a breathing exercise she mentioned when something at work stressed me out. This is going to be a great gift at the holidays for several people on my list. Highly recommend for anyone wanting to learn some new techniques and deal with stress!
Date published: 2018-07-18
  • y_2021, m_4, d_21, h_17
  • bvseo_bulk, prod_bvrr, vn_bulk_3.0.14
  • cp_2, bvpage2n
  • co_hasreviews, tv_2, tr_35
  • loc_en_CA, sid_9208, prod, sort_[SortEntry(order=SUBMISSION_TIME, direction=DESCENDING)]
  • clientName_teachco
  • bvseo_sdk, p_sdk, 3.2.1
  • CLOUD, getReviews, 6.01ms
iRest: Integrative Restoration Yoga Nidra for Deep Relaxation
Course Trailer
Introducing iRest Yoga Nidra
1: Introducing iRest Yoga Nidra

One of the most important principles in iRest is that of welcoming: inviting you to explore whatever arises as a part of your human experience. Begin your journey with a look at how stress affects the body, the roots of yoga nidra, and the 10 steps of iRest you’ll practice throughout the course.

38 min
iRest Foundations: Philosophy and Practice
2: iRest Foundations: Philosophy and Practice

Take a closer look at the foundations of iRest from philosophical and practical perspectives. What texts and teachings form the basis of yoga nidra? How do you set up the right practice space? What time of day is the best time to practice iRest? Is it OK to fall asleep during your practice?

33 min
Creating an Inner Resource
3: Creating an Inner Resource

Your Inner Resource is a haven of peace and serenity—a felt sense of well-being deeply rooted inside your body. In this lecture, Ms. Birkholm shows you how to cultivate and connect with your Inner Resource, which is one of the most essential parts of your iRest practice.

33 min
iRest Practice: Inner Resource
4: iRest Practice: Inner Resource

Start tapping into your personal Inner Resource. Join several other students as Ms. Birkholm guides you through a helpful session designed to help you develop an internal experience of well-being that can help you transition from the anxieties of your outside life to the calm of your meditation practice.

39 min
The Power of Intention and Heartfelt Desire
5: The Power of Intention and Heartfelt Desire

Two tools you can use to live as your best self (however you define that) are intention and heartfelt desire. Explore these second and third steps of iRest Yoga Nidra as a way to move closer to reconnecting with your true self and living the life you want most.

33 min
iRest Practice: Intention
6: iRest Practice: Intention

Explore your intention and heartfelt desire in this extended iRest practice session. By identifying them at the start of the practice, putting them away, and returning to them again at the conclusion of your practice, you’ll perhaps experience these two aspects of iRest Yoga Nidra in entirely different ways.

33 min
Learning to Listen to Your Body
7: Learning to Listen to Your Body

Learn how to think of your body as a symphony of sensations and signals. After a brief overview of the different layers of consciousness in iRest, focus on the first: the physical body. Benefits of attuning yourself to your body include heightened sensory awareness and pointers into your true nature.

33 min
iRest Practice: Body Sensing
8: iRest Practice: Body Sensing

Practice allowing yourself to receive the different messages your body’s trying to send you. As a way to help you explore your body more deeply (and to gauge some of its benefits), this iRest practice session invites you to continually tense and relax your body (physically or mentally).

31 min
Exploring the Power of the Breath
9: Exploring the Power of the Breath

Ms. Birkholm reveals what your breath can tell you about your health and peace of mind. Start by learning the yogic and scientific perspectives on breathing. Then, turn to breathing exercise techniques you can incorporate into your iRest practice, including breath counting, Ferris wheel breath, and alternate nostril breathing.

33 min
iRest Practice: Breath Sensing
10: iRest Practice: Breath Sensing

The focus of this practice session is on a deep meditation using the principles of breath sensing you learned in the previous lecture. Join several other students and see some of the ways sensing and controlling your breath can influence your physical and mental experience during your practice.

35 min
Feelings and Emotions as Messengers
11: Feelings and Emotions as Messengers

Another step of the iRest protocol is thinking of your feelings and emotions as “messengers” that tell you how your body and mind are experiencing the world. Learn to differentiate between feelings and emotions, examine the entire spectrum of emotions, and learn to work with opposite emotions.

30 min
iRest Practice: Feelings and Emotions
12: iRest Practice: Feelings and Emotions

Put the previous lecture’s principles, strategies, and insights to use in a helpful meditative experience led by Ms. Birkholm. Welcome different emotions and feelings into your body—whichever ones happen to arise during your iRest Yoga Nidra practice—as if they were simply visitors in your home.

34 min
Finding Deeper Wisdom in Your Beliefs
13: Finding Deeper Wisdom in Your Beliefs

In this lecture, Ms. Birkholm shares proactive tools for what you can do when you feel limited by your thoughts. You’ll encounter the fundamentals of cognition, the Laws of Opposites and Awareness, and the five kanchukas (or thoughts) that can be found at the root of all human suffering.

31 min
iRest Practice: Beliefs
14: iRest Practice: Beliefs

Get better acquainted with some of the beliefs you have as a way to become more aware and accepting of your whole experience. Through this helpful iRest practice session, you’ll explore ways to use your thoughts and beliefs to direct you toward creating the life you want to lead.

35 min
Discovering Uncaused Joy
15: Discovering Uncaused Joy

In this lecture, learn ways you can live in a joyous equanimity that exists independent of objects. Through methods including the “three blessings” (writing down three things that went well and why) and “day’s reviews” (reflecting on unfinished events), better realize the ever-present joy in your life.

35 min
iRest Practice: Joyful Well-Being
16: iRest Practice: Joyful Well-Being

How can you better open yourself up to experience peace? It starts with this iRest Yoga Nidra practice session designed to help you cultivate joy. Join Ms. Birkholm and several other students as you, together, tap into the power of the anandamaya kosha stage of iRest.

34 min
Cultivating Awareness
17: Cultivating Awareness

Turn to the goal of iRest practice: cultivating awareness. Feel into the “I-thought” the same way you do your breathing. Take a closer look at the continuum of awareness, which stretches from your perception of the self as separate to pure awareness, in which all sense of self dissolves.

34 min
iRest Practice: Awareness and Peace
18: iRest Practice: Awareness and Peace

In this illuminating iRest practice session, you and several other students will take time to explore what it’s like to move into witnessing awareness and come closer to fully embodying enlightenment and deep connection in your life. How far along the continuum of awareness can you move?

41 min
Using iRest for Sleep
19: Using iRest for Sleep

Focus on something Ms. Birkholm takes extremely seriously: sleep. First, get tips on turning your bedroom into a sanctuary for sleep. Then, learn two important techniques to help you get a restful night’s sleep, and cap it with a brief practice session designed to help you fall asleep.

33 min
Using iRest for Pain Relief
20: Using iRest for Pain Relief

Walk through the 10 steps of the iRest protocol as they pertain to dealing with chronic pain, whether it’s physical (a car accident) or emotional (the loss of a job). Ms. Birkholm shows that, in order to manage pain, you need to approach it from multiple angles.

35 min
Using iRest for Stress Management
21: Using iRest for Stress Management

The key to overcoming anxiety, as you’ll learn here, is by becoming a source of connection, strength, and resiliency. And this is where iRest plays a critical role. To give you a taste of this, Ms. Birkholm includes a short iRest practice session designed to help you tackle stress.

36 min
Using iRest for Healing Trauma
22: Using iRest for Healing Trauma

Move beyond life’s ordinary stressors to look at how iRest can help heal major trauma in your life. Start by going over the basics of how trauma affects the body and mind. Then, examine how you can use iRest principles to integrate your experiences and counteract their traumatic effects.

38 min
The Science behind iRest Yoga Nidra
23: The Science behind iRest Yoga Nidra

What about iRest Yoga Nidra makes it effective? It’s all rooted in the scientific research that supports the practice of iRest and illustrates how and why meditation is so healing. Take a closer look at how the five components of mindfulness—including intention and disidentification—work together.

37 min
iRest Yoga Nidra for Everyday Life
24: iRest Yoga Nidra for Everyday Life

Conclude the course with a lecture on the tenth step of iRest, during which you come back to life in deep connection with a deep sense of peace. Enjoy a lasting feeling of empowerment at how iRest can help you become the fullest expression of your true self.

42 min
Molly Birkholm

Think of yoga nidra as a filing system for your mind that guides you through an experience of your body; breath; and any feelings, emotions, or beliefs that may be present. It then gently leads you into deeper states of mindful awareness and stillness.


iRest Institute


iRest Institute

About Molly Birkholm

Molly Birkholm is a trauma specialist and iRest® trainer affiliated with the iRest Institute; a cofounder of Warriors at Ease; and the CEO of Molly Birkholm, Inc. As a yoga and meditation teacher and trainer, professional speaker, consultant, and writer, she inspires others to create meaningful life changes using research-based yoga and mindfulness meditation techniques. A featured teacher for Yoga International and the host of a year-long, online course called Women’s Empowerment Initiative, Ms. Birkholm has spent extended time living in ashrams and monasteries in India and Bhutan, where she studied yoga, meditation, Sanskrit, and Hindu and Buddhist philosophy. In addition to her training in iRest® Yoga Nidra, Ms. Birkholm has also completed the Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centre Advanced Teachers’ Training Course. As a cofounder of Warriors at Ease, Ms. Birkholm helped pioneer evidence-based, trauma-sensitive yoga and meditation programs for people with post-traumatic stress disorder in the military and other communities affected by trauma. She has conducted innovative clinical research with the National Institutes of Health and the Department of Defense, and her stress management and trauma treatment programs are shared with leaders and top organizations around the world, including the U.S. Department of Defense, McKinsey & Company, JPMorgan Chase, and the Young Presidents’ Organization.

Also By This Professor