These four yoga poses done in the morning will wake you up, elevate your mood and alleviate pain. Designate a spot in your home to set up your mat. In a pinch you can do these poses without a mat.
- Child’s Pose (Balasana) – five minutes
Bring your knees wide and your toes to touch, sink your hips to your heels and extend your hands out to the front of your mat. Rest your forehead on your mat or a towel if it does not comfortably reach the floor. Move a little to get comfortable; pressing your palms, fingers and forearms into the mat massaging your forehead by rolling it side to side. When you have settled in to this posture, take deep, full breaths and exhale completely.
- Table Top to Cat/Cow – move through the following in about three minutes
Move into Table Top from Child’s Pose on your exhale. Set your wrists under your shoulders and your knees under your hip bones, aligning your joints. Look at your hands and spread your fingers energetically and press into your palms equalizing the pressure throughout your hands. From Table Top, drop your head and close your eyes moving organically through the hips, swaying from side to side or moving hips around in a circle. Come back to neutral spine and inhale to Cow by lifting your chin and tailbone up. From Cow-exhale to Cat by arching your back and gazing at your belly. Repeat by inhaling to Cow and exhaling to Cat, five times. Make sure to take deep long breaths and move into Cat and Cow slowly, letting your breath lead the way.
- Down Dog – three minutes
Move from Table Top to Down Dog. From Table Top, move your knees back about two inches, tuck your toes under and push the floor away from you as you move into an inverted V position. In Down Dog, peddle your feet out, drawing your heals to the mat and move through your hips. Your hands are shoulder width distance apart and your feet are hips width distance apart. Actively push the floor away from you, lengthening from the crown of your head to your hips. It may be necessary to bend your knees slightly to create the inverted V or 90 degree angle in the hips.
- Rag Doll – four minutes
From Down Dog, bend your knees and walk your hands to your feet. Start with slightly bent knees and rest fingertips on the mat. Relax your head and neck. Grab opposite elbows and hang out here in stillness or sway from side to side. Release your hands back to the mat and bend knees so you can comfortably clasp your hands behind your back. Squeezing your shoulder blades together and expanding through the chest.
Release your hands back to the mat, slowly roll up to standing and have an AMAZING DAY!
Remember to check out Greenwood’s yoga schedule, where you’ll find 8 different yoga styles and over 30 yoga classes offered each week.
Marda Zechiel, GATC Yoga Manager