As 2016 comes to an end the first goal that’s on most people’s New Years Resolution List is “Fitness”. We all vow to get fit at the end of the old year and beginning of the new year but often fall off the band wagon mid way through. Today I’m sharing 5 super easy yoga poses for beginners. Contrary to what many may believe, anyone can try yoga. Yoga isn’t limited to your size or flexibility. It’s really all in your mind. Like really! Just keep saying “I CAN” and trust me “YOU WILL”.
Let’s start off with a few stretches first. I have a set that I enjoy doing and I’m sure you have a few that helps get you loose for your workout. Let’s take 5-10 to warm our body up. Never start any exercise without warming up first. Secondly, make sure that you wear comfortable clothing that will allow you to move easily without being restricted. Cool! Let’s get started!
Yoga Pose 1 -Downward Dog AKA Adho Mukha Svanasana:
- From all fours (on your hands and knees) bring your hands slightly forward of your shoulders.
- Firm your hands down, pressing through the outer edges of the palm and the finger tips (Balance)
- Keep your upper arms and shoulders rotated outwards while your forearms rotate in.
- Tuck your toes under (feet are hip distance apart).
- On an exhalation, engage your lower belly drawing the navel back to the spine. Press the floor away from you, lift your hips back and up to push yourself back into an upside-down V pose. (Breathing through your mouth)
- Keep your knees bent to lengthen the spine, taking the hips up and away from you. Then if possible straighten the legs, while maintaining the length in the spine. Taking the top of the thighs and knees back.
- Press upper arms towards each other, shoulder blades down along the spine, but keeping the space across the tops of the shoulders.
Yoga Pose 2 -Sukhasana:
- Begin sitting on the mat with the sit-bones on the front edge of a firm cushion or folded blanket if needed>
- Cross your shins parallel to the mat, bringing each foot beneath the opposite knee. Try to bring your feet in line with the knees.
- Lengthen your spine keeping the natural arches in your spine, push the sitbones into the floor to root down and create length through the crown of your head. Firm your shoulder blades in.
- Place your hands on your lap or knees with palms up (more open), or palms down (calming).
Yoga Pose 3 – Childs Pose AKA Balasana:
- Kneel on the floor. Spread your knees to the width of your hips, big toes together.
- Exhale and bring your belly to rest between the thighs, lowering your buttocks towards your heels. Lengthen your spine. Breathe into your lower back.
- Lay your arms on the floor alongside your torso, palms up, and release the fronts of your shoulders toward the floor. You can also extend them out in front for a deeper stretch. Rest your forehead into the floor.
- Maintain the pose for at least 30 seconds to a few minutes in this resting pose.
- To come up, first lengthen the front torso, and then with an inhalation lift from the tailbone as it presses down and into the pelvis.
Yoga Pose 4 – Camel Pose AKA Ustrasana:
- Position yourself on your knees, place the knees hip width apart, body upright. Toes tucked under, or if you are more flexible, point your toes back.
- Place your hands on your lower back, heels of the hands resting on the lower back, fingers pointing down.
- Engage your legs. Pull the thighs back so the hips are still over the knees. Rotate the inner thighs in a little and with your hands help to lengthen the buttocks down. Your hip bones and lower ribs firm towards each other. Try to maintain this action throughout the pose.
- With the lower body stable, begin to breathe in towards the chest, drawing the shoulder blades back as you lift the chest.
- When you begin to exhale come into your backbend keeping the chest lifted and without crunching the neck or lower back.
- You can keep the head neutral throughout the pose.
- Lift the lower back ribs away from the lumbar spine to create even more length in the lower back and to facilitate the opening in the chest even more.
- Try to stay in the pose for 30 seconds to a minute, breathing into the chest to facilitate the opening there. If you notice that your having difficulty breathing you should proceed into a variation you can sustain with breathing smoothly.
- To come out, place the hands to the front hip bones and guide them down as you lift back up on an inhalation. If your head is all the way back lead with the heart, bring the head up last.
- Neutralize and lengthen your spine in Downward Facing Dog Pose before resting in Child’s Pose for a few breaths.
Yoga Pose 5 – Cobra Pose AKA Bhujangasana:
- Lie on your stomach, toes pointing straight back, hands underneath the shoulders, elbows close to the body. Legs engaged, roll inner thighs inward, but keep the heels pointing up, then pull your belly in and up and with your forehead on the floor.
- On an inhalation, lift from the back of your heart to bring your chest up. Roll the collar bones up and firm the shoulder blades into the upper back, a little down along the spine.
- Then lift your head, open your heart, with no weight in the hands yet. Extend out through the toes.
- Come down again on an outbreath. You can repeat that two times..
- The third time when you come up, you can help with the hands and come up higher. Lift your chest first (from the back of your heart), head follows. Firm the tailbone in towards the pubis and draw the lower belly in and up. Come up all the way up to a point where it feels good to you, still maintaining a connection from the pelvis to the legs.
- Bring the side ribs forward, draw the upper arm bones back, lengthen the neck.
- Feel the backbend through the entire spine.
- In the final pose you can look up, but only if you maintain length in the back of the neck and for that your chest needs to be really open and you need to be able to lift through the sternum. To keep your neck safe, keep the back of the neck long at all times.
- Hold the pose for 5 to 10 breaths.
- To come out, lower the body down on an exhalation and give your body a minute rest, or you push yourself into Child’s Pose and rest there for a minute or so.
Stay Tuned for Next Weeks 5 Easy Beginner Poses…..
**Steps provided by https://www.ekhartyoga.com**