No time for Yoga

 

New month, new day.. a lot of things to do and so little time.  And when there’s no time for a deep 1 hour yoga session in the morning, it doesn’t mean that the body doesn’t need some good stretches to start the day.

This sequence can be as short as 5 min long or you can extended it as much as half an hour (the magic of asana practice, right?) It only depends on how long do you want to hold a pose, for me the perfect time is 5 breaths each. It will give you enough time to stretch but also to strengthen the muscles.

Don’t try to make it perfect, just make sure you are not harming yourself, props like a towel under the knee and some blocks to get more space in the arms are perfect.

1-01
On your hands and knees, keep the gaze a little bit further that the hands. Engage the core muscles and lift one leg straight back, imagine they are pulling your heel back, your hands are shoulder distance with the fingertips active against the mat. Back to hands and knees, tuck the toes and lift the tailbone for Downward Facing Dog, if its the first dog in the morning, keep the knees bent, and start pushing your torso away from the floor, shoulders away from the ears, gaze at the feet or knees.

 

 

2-01
From Downward Facing Dog, look forward and bring one feet in between your hands, it doesn’t have to be in one huge step, you can even help yourself with your hand. once you get there, place the other knee down (here is when you want to put a towel under the knee if hurts), lift the torso and place your hands over your thigh. After doing both sides, go back to down dog and start walking your feet towards your hands, bend the knee as needed and hug your elbows, move to one side to the other to stretch the lower back and torso.

 

3-01
From forward fold, send one leg straight back, toes strong in the floor, the opposite leg is in a 90 degree angle . Hands on the side at the floor or using blocks to get more space. Looking forward, back straight. Then you can do a variation for stronger legs doing high lunge. Arms up, lengthen the spine, look forwar, belly tucked in.
4-01
With the feet hip distance apart, grab the big toe with first two fingers, lengthen the spine and pull yourself down, try to bring the tailbone as high as you can, engaging the glutes. Bend the knees if you can’t keep the spine long , shoulders away from the ears. For garland pose, the feet go wider than hip width distance, hands in prayer and elbows out doing pressure against the legs, you can use a block to sit or lift the sitbones a little bit higher.

These are common poses that you find in a regular vinyasa class, great for hamstring stretching and some of them also help to strengthen the muscles . I really suggest to do these poses as often as you can, even if you don’t feel like working out (maybe those days are the ones that you need this the most).

Keeping an active body will not only help you on the physical but also in the mental, believe me! Breathe, relax and enjoy the ride.

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