Easy yoga sequence
A short sequence of gentle, dynamic movements to evoke ease in the body and reduce stress and tension — with Patricia Amado
Yoga aims to bring our system into a state of balance through a harmonious union of mind, body, and spirit. By way of stimulating energy flow throughout the body, this mini sequence of gentle dynamic movements will evoke ease and relief from the stress and tension we may experience in our day-to-day lives. Helping to relieve stress, to reduce tension, and to increase energy are just a few of the many ways in which yoga can benefit your life. So, with an open mind, let’s begin!
Breathing through the nose only, bring awareness to the quality of your breath, following the natural rhythms and allowing it to be free and unobstructed. As you become more aware of your breathing and the pathway of the breath, simply observe instead of controlling, holding, or restricting it. Breakdown of the poses after a series of limbering up exercises and spinal wave movements to release each joint:
1. This asana helps improve spinal flexibility through gentle movements of the spine, shoulders, and hip. Begin on all fours stacking the knees under the hip keeping them hip-width apart and shoulders on top of the wrists. Head and neck parallel to the floor.
2. Using your inhale, drop your navel towards the mat, lift your sitting bones, open and lift your chest, and look up.
3. On the exhale, draw your navel in towards your spine, tuck your chin, and round your back. Lightly tuck in your tailbone as you dome your upper back and shoulders. Feel your palms pushing away from you into the mat.
1. Deepening the backbend from the previous pose, slide your hands forward and keep your knees below your hips, as you walk your upper body forward allowing your chest and chin to come down towards the mat.
2. Allow the chest to drop and for the chin to touch the floor. If this is too intense, simply rest your forehead on the mat and breathe deeply, allowing for your chest to release in the direction of the floor.
3. Keep your shoulders away from your ears and hold from 10 seconds, increasing gradually to 30 seconds, relieving the body of backache and fatigue.
Child’s Pose (not pictured)
1.Knees together or apart, sit onto your heels and walk your upper body forward until your arms are outstretched in front of you, and your eyebrow centre is on the mat. You can rest with palms down or bring your arms alongside you, palms facing upwards as you allow for the shoulders to relax.
2. Let your lower back and back muscles soften, release, and relax. This is a relaxing asana that invites a soothing feeling of calmness to the more subtle layers of the body: the nervous system and the mind.
Low Lunge Pose
1. Kneeling on all fours, step your right foot in between your hands. Your right knee should be aligned on top of your right ankle and not beyond it. Keep your fingertips to the floor, untuck your back toes so the top of the foot is onto the mat.
2. Keeping the right leg on top of the ankle, interlace your fingers and place the hands on top of the right knee creating a gentle traction, as you lengthen the torso up and away from the thigh.
3. Once comfortable and grounded, as you feel the opening and stretch of the hip and hip flexors, extend the arms up while keeping the shoulders away from the ears. Lightly move the pinky fingers inwards to feel a deeper stretch through the arms.
4. Lower the arms and place the palms onto the floor, flex the left toes, move the right leg back, and come into a downward facing position feeling free to pedal the feet back and forth.
5. Drop onto your knees and repeat steps with the opposite leg.
Eagle Arms - Seated (not pictured)
1. With knees folded back sitting on your heels, raise the right arm up and bring the left arm across in diagonal position. Lower the right elbow on top of the left, as you bend your elbows and interlace the arms until you press the palms together.
2. As you lengthen through the spine, point the thumbs towards the nose and keep the elbows up and away from the heart centre further opening the thoracic spine.
3. Keeping the shoulders relaxed, hold for five counts and switch arms.
4. Stretch the arms overhead, interlace the fingers, and turn the palms facing upward while keeping the gaze forward to avoid lifting the neck. 5. Relax the shoulders and arms down savouring the new energy through the heart.
Alternate Floor Twists
1. Lie flat on your back and stretch out your arms, leveling them with the shoulders and palms facing up. Bend your knees and keep the feet hip width apart, or a little wider pressing the soles of the feet down.
2. In dynamic movements, lower the knees to the right, as you look over the left shoulder and into the left hand. Keeping the shoulders pinned to the ground, bring the knees and head back to centre.
3. Alternate dynamically to the opposite side, and after to ten times, hold the twist on each side for ten counts.
4. Return the legs back to centre and stretch them out. This is a great way to alleviate sciatic pain and release lower back pain.
5. Twisting poses are beneficial in opening and bringing mobility into the spine, as well as increasing vitality.
1. Lying flat on the mat with legs together, bring your right knee towards you and interlace your fingers below your knee to add a gentle push for the knee to go deeper into the chest. Hold for 10 counts.
2. Release the knee and allow it to naturally separate from the chest. Place your left hand on the outside of the right knee and gently twist to the left side. Extend the right arm, gazing towards the right hand.
3. Softly drawing the lower navel in, allow for the twist to deepen by letting the knee touch the floor. If this is not possible, just simply keep sending energy in that direction and hold for 10 seconds.
4. Return your leg back to centre and stretch the leg out. Repeat on the other side.
After a series of asana movements that help open, stretch, massage, and nourish and release the body, we can increase the benefits through back bending. This allows us to stretch the front of the body, strengthen the back, and internal organs.
1. Lying on your back, bend the knees keeping the feet hip width apart. Palms facing down along side of the body exhale completely.
2. With the next inhalation, begin to press through the feet, as you lift the pelvis and lift the chest while keeping the chin lightly tucked in and hold it for five.
3. As you exhale, slowly come down. You can choose to interlace the hands behind the back and roll the shoulder blades back and down while keeping the interlaced hands, or fist, on the floor.
4. Repeat five times.
5. Bring both knees onto the chest and hold. Give yourself little rocks back and forward or take child’s pose.
Taking final relaxation pose, lie flat on the mat and just observe the natural flow of the breath, as you notice the abdomen rising and falling with every soft organic inhalation and exhalation on the lower navel.
Remain here for a minimum of five minutes and then draw your attention towards your heart centre. Notice the lightness and spaciousness in the heart centre and invite that feeling of lightness throughout the whole body, letting the body be light.
Gently wiggle your fingers and toes to invite movement back into the body. Take a deep inhale and stretch the arms over the head and stretch the legs. As you exhale bend your knees on to your chest and give yourself little rocks from side to side, massaging the lower back. Come into a foetal-like position and stay there one moment. Keeping the eyes closed, come onto the top of the mat into a comfortable seated position and allow yourself to settle in with that state of inner stillness and inner serenity.
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