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Yoga Day 34

WARM-UP

1. Constructive Rest Pose w/ Arms Overhead

Starting position: Start by lying supine (on your back). Bend the knees and plant the bottoms of your feet on the ground ~12-16 inches away from your buttocks (Constructive Rest Pose).

  1. Inhale and sweep your arms along the floor, bringing your upper arms to rest on the ground next to your ears.
  2. Spend 30-60 seconds here, collecting your thoughts and tuning into your breath. When you’re done, sweep your arms back down to rest beside your torso.

2. Cycling Pose (Pada Sanchalanasana)

Transition: Release from Constructive Rest Pose, relaxing your arms beside you and extending the legs straight.

  1. Start out lying supine with your legs extended straight and your arms relaxed.
  2. On an exhale, lift and bend your right leg, bringing the front of the thigh toward your chest.
  3. Inhale, straightening your leg with the bottoms of your feet facing the ceiling.
  4. Exhale and lower your leg toward the ground, keeping it hovering a few inches above the floor.
  5. Inhale and relax your right leg back to the floor completely, then repeat with your left leg.
  6. Repeat 2-3 more times for each leg.

3. Supine Windshield Wipers

Transition: From Cycling Pose (Pada Sanchalanasana), remain on your back and plant your feet flat on the mat.

  1. Begin lying supine. Bend the knees, planting the bottom of your feet on the floor at the outer edges of your mat.
  2. Extend your arms straight out on the ground beside you in a T shape.
  3. Keeping your upper arms flat on the ground, raise your forearms straight up and make sure your back and shoulder blades are broad. Then, rotate your upper arms back, bringing your forearms down to the ground pointing away from you (Cactus Arms). If this is too uncomfortable, you can keep your arms in the T shape.
  4. Inhale and lean both knees to the right, slowly lowering them toward the ground as far as you comfortably can.
  5. Spend 30 seconds here, breathing deeply, then exhale and lift your knees back to the starting position.
  6. Repeat, this time leaning your knees to the left.

 

4. Reclined Half Cow Face Pose (Supta Ardha Gomukhasana)

Transition: Remain lying supine. Relax your arms beside you and bring your legs inward so that they’re hip-width apart, planting your feet on the mat.

  1. Start out lying supine with your feet planted hip-distance apart on the mat.
  2. Inhale and slowly allow the outer side of your right knee to sink to the ground. Bring the bottom of your right foot a little closer to your left foot if needed or make any other necessary adjustments in order to fully achieve this.
  3. Exhale and lift your left leg, then inhale as you thread it over your right leg, bringing the bottom of your left foot to the mat on the other side of the right thigh.
  4. Breathe deeply here for 30-60 seconds, then return to the starting position and repeat on the other side.

 

5. Reclined Hand-to-Big-Toe Pose (Supta Padangusthasana)

Transition: From Reclined Half Cow Face Pose (Supta Ardha Gomukhasana), straighten both legs.

  1. Begin lying supine with your legs straight and hip-width apart. Flex the feet, pushing your heels away from you.
  2. On an exhale, lift your right leg and bend the knee so that you can grab your big toe with the thumb, index and middle fingers of your right hand. Alternatively, you can loop a strap or towel over the ball of your foot and hold on with both hands.
  3. Inhale and slowly straighten your right leg (or get it however close to straight you can comfortably achieve without strain or discomfort).
  4. Take 2-3 deep breaths here, then inhale and slowly lower the outer side of your right leg down toward the floor (or as far as you can) on your right side.
  5. Exhale, return your leg to the center, and lower it back to the floor straight in front of you on the inhale.
  6. Repeat with the left leg.

 

6. Reverse Pigeon Pose (Sucirandhrasana)

Transition: Release your legs straight and remain supine.

  1. Inhale and bring your right ankle to your left thigh just above the knee so that your right shin runs in a straight line perpendicular to your left thigh.
  2. Exhale as you bend your left knee, drawing your left thigh and right ankle toward your upper body. Bring both hands to the back of your left thigh just below the crook of your left knee, threading the right hand through the space between your legs below the right calf.
  3. Breathe deeply here for 30 seconds.
  4. On an inhale, slowly straighten your left leg and sink it back down to the floor.
  5. Gently remove your right ankle from your left thigh, straightening your right leg and releasing it back down to the floor.
  6. Repeat with your left ankle on your right thigh.

 

7. Supine Spinal Twist II Pose (Supta Matsyendrasana II)

Transition: After releasing from Reverse Pigeon Pose, keep your legs straight and lower your upper body back down to the floor.

  1. Start out lying supine on your mat.
  2. Extend your arms out to each side of you like you’re making a T shape.
  3. Inhale and lift your right leg, bending at the knee ~90 degrees.
  4. Exhale and bring the inner side of your right knee or foot to the floor on the other side of your left leg, taking a gentle twist in the spine. Shift your gaze to your right fingertips.
  5. Stay here for 30 seconds. Close your eyes and really relax into this posture, allowing gravity to pull your right knee closer to the ground.
  6. On an inhale, roll your right hip back down to the ground, then exhale and release your leg back to the floor.
  7. Repeat on your left side.

 

8. Reclined Cow Face Pose (Supta Gomukhasana)

Transition: Release from Supine Spinal Twist II, straightening both legs in front of you.

  1. Start out lying supine with your legs straight in front of you.
  2. Bend your left knee and plant your foot on the mat, then cross your right leg over the left.
  3. Hug your knees in toward your chest enough to grab your right ankle with your left hand, and your left ankle with the right hand.
  4. Remain here, breathing deeply for 30 seconds, then inhale and return to the starting position.
  5. Repeat with your left leg crossed over your right.

 


 

PEAK FLOW

1. Downward-Facing Dog Pose (Adho Mukha Svanasana)

Transition: From Reclined Cow Face Pose, release your legs and roll over onto your belly, planting your palms below your shoulders.

  1. Tuck your toes, then inhale and lift onto them, taking the tailbone back and up until your arms and legs are fully extended, creating an upside-down V shape with your body.
  2. Remain here for 2-3 full breaths.

2. Downward Dog to Plank Pose Flow

  1. Beginning in Downward-Facing Dog Pose, exhale and bring your body forward, shifting the weight onto the hands to come into Plank Pose.
  2. Take a breath here before moving on to the next pose.

3. Forward Fold Flow

Transition: Keeping your hands planted, slowly walk your feet toward your hands to come into a forward fold.

  1. Beginning in Forward Fold Pose, inhale and lift your torso so that it’s a straight horizontal line with your spine and neck neutral.
  2. Exhale back down to a full Forward Fold.

 

4. Volcano Pose (Urdhva Hastasana)

Transition: Slowly inhale your way up from Forward Fold Pose to Mountain Pose.

  1. While in Mountain Pose, inhale and sweep your arms up over your head, either joining your palms together or keeping them parallel to each other.
  2. Shift your gaze up to the ceiling and breathe here for 30 seconds.

 

5. Tree Pose (Vrksasana)

Transition: Release your arms to your sides, returning to Mountain Pose.

  1. Beginning in Mountain Pose, bring your palms together in front of your chest. Begin slowly shifting your weight onto your right leg.
  2. Once you’re stable and balanced, inhale the left leg up, bending the knee and opening the front of the pelvis. Depending on your comfort level, you can bring the bottom of your left foot to your right ankle, calf, lower thigh, or groin area.
  3. Breathe here for 30 seconds, maintaining your balance and keeping your core engaged. If you feel comfortable, you can raise your arms overhead and/or close your eyes.

 

6. Dancer Pose (Natarajasana)

Transition: Release from Tree Pose back to Mountain Pose.

  1. Bend your right knee slightly and begin to shift your weight onto your right leg. Float your right arm forward.
  2. When you’ve gathered your balance, begin to lift the left leg up behind you and reach back to grab the top of your foot with your left hand. Keep your neck neutral by gazing forward.
  3. Breathe here for 30 seconds, trying to deepen the pose with each exhale.

7. Warrior I Pose (Virabhadrasana I)

Transition: Release from Dancer Pose, planting your left foot back behind you.

  1. With your right foot forward, knee bent at a 90-degree angle, and stacked above the ankle, rotate your left foot.
  2. Align the back/side of the left heel with the back of the right heel (or slightly wider if you need a wider base of support).
  3. Straighten your left knee by pushing the left thighbone back.
  4. Once you’re balanced and stable, inhale and raise your torso, lifting your belly away from your right thigh. As you do so, raise your arms to extend straight up with the palms facing each other.
  5. Remain here for 30 seconds.

8. Downward Dog to Mountain Pose Flow

Transition: Exhale your palms to the ground and step your right foot back to flow into Downward-Facing Dog Pose.

  1. On an exhale, begin walking your feet forward to come into Standing Forward Fold Pose.
  2. Take 2-3 breaths here and alternate bending and straightening your knees.
  3. Inhale and slowly raise your torso up to come into Mountain Pose.

 

Repeat poses 1-7, switching to the opposite side as necessary for asymmetrical poses.

9. Downward-Facing Dog Pose (Adho Mukha Svanasana)

Transition: From Mountain Pose, exhale your palms to the ground and step your right foot back to flow into Downward-Facing Dog Pose.

  1. Tuck your toes, then inhale and lift onto them, taking the tailbone back and up until your arms and legs are fully extended, creating an upside-down V shape with your body.
  2. Remain here for 1-2 breaths.

10. Plank Pose (Phalakasana)

  1. Inhale your body forward, stacking your wrists under your shoulders and extending your legs straight behind you to come into Plank Pose.
  2. Remain here for 30 seconds.

 

11. Side Plank Pose (Vasisthasana)

  1. From Plank Pose, turn your knees and toes to face out to the right as you rotate the left side of your body into a side plank. Keep your feet engaged while supporting yourself on the outer edge of your foot. You can bring your right hand to your hip, up in the air, or overhead.
  2. Breathe here for 30 seconds.
  3. Exhale and release back to Plank Pose.

12. Wild Thing Pose (Camatkarasana)

  1. In Side Plank Pose, keep your left arm firmly planted, shoulders stacked above the hands.
  2. With your left foot planted, grounding through all four corners of the foot, lift the right foot and bring the ball of the foot to the floor slightly behind you.
  3. Inhale and try to roll your body further so that your chest is angled skyward and your right arm is extended toward the wall behind you with your upper arm next to your ear.

 

Repeat poses 9-12, switching to the opposite side as necessary for asymmetrical poses.

 

13. Wide Child's Pose (Prasarita Balasana)

Transition: Release from Wild Thing Pose, bringing your hands and knees to the mat in Table Top Pose.

  1. Starting on your hands and knees, make sure your knees are slightly wider than hip-distance apart while bringing the toes of both feet together.
  2. Press your palms into the mat as if to push the ground away from you and sink your sit bones all the way down and back to rest your heels.
  3. Rest your forehead on the mat, close your eyes, and breathe deep. Remain here for 30 seconds.

 

14. Eight-Limbed Striking Cobra Flow

  1. Inhale one last time in Wide Child’s Pose.
  2. Exhale and rock forward onto your hands, arching your back slightly and bringing the tailbone up to flow into Four-Limbed Staff Pose.
  3. On your next inhale, push the floor away and extend your arms straight to lift your upper body into Cobra Pose.
  4. Exhale your way back down into Four-Limbed Staff Pose.
  5. Inhale, then exhale your sit bones back toward your heels, returning to Child’s Pose.
  6. Repeat this flow for 30 seconds.

 

15. Puppy Dog Pose (Uttana Shishosana)

Transition: From Child’s Pose, inhale yourself up onto your hands and knees.

  1. Inhale and tuck the toes as your slowly walk your hands forward.
  2. Exhale and move your sit bones back halfway toward your heels. Bring your forehead to the floor, relaxing your neck. Push your tailbone slightly outward, creating a gentle curve in the lower back.
  3. Breathe deeply here, directing the air toward your lower back for 30-60 seconds.

 

16. Child's Pose (Balasana)

Transition: From Puppy Dog Pose, inhale yourself up onto your hands and knees.

  1. Press your palms into the mat as if to push the ground away from you and sink your sit bones all the way down and back to rest your heels.
  2. Rest your forehead on the mat, close your eyes, and breathe deep. Remain here for 30-60 seconds.

COOL DOWN

1. Thread the Needle Pose (Urdhva Mukha Pasasana)

Transition: From Child's Pose, inhale yourself up onto your hands and knees in Table Top Pose.

  1. Take a deep breath as you lift your left palm. Exhale and thread your left arm underneath you and past your right arm, bending the right arm so you can fully extend the left arm and lay it flat on the floor.
  2. Remain here for 30 seconds, resting your left ear to the floor and progressively relaxing deeper into the pose.
  3. Inhale and return to your hands and knees, then repeat with the right arm threaded under you.

2. Striking Cobra Flow

Transition: From Thread the Needle Pose, release and relax your sit bones back to come into Child’s Pose.

  1. Take a moment to center yourself in Child's Pose.
  2. On your next inhale, raise your upper body and walk your upper body forward slightly as you extend your legs behind. Exhale, allowing the front of your pelvis to become grounded.
  3. Inhale and extend your arms and shift your gaze slightly up so that the curve in the back of your neck is a continuation of the curve created by your spine.
  4. Breathe deeply here for 3-4 full breath cycles.

3. Easy Half Bow Pose (Eka Pada Dhanurasana)

Transition: From Striking Cobra Pose, fully release your body to the floor with your arms extended flat on the floor in front of you and rest your forehead for a moment.

  1. Begin by lying prone on the floor with your arms outstretched forward.
  2. Inhale and bend your right knee to kick your foot toward your buttocks, grabbing onto it with your right hand. Keep your right thigh, hips, and the front of your right shoulder grounded.
  3. Remain here for 30 seconds, pressing the top of your foot into your hand just enough to keep your right arm fully extended.
  4. On an exhale, release your foot and arm back to the starting position, then repeat on the other side.

4. Half Wind Release Pose (Ardha Pavanmuktasana)

Transition: Lower yourself back down to the ground, then roll over onto your back in the center of your mat.

  1. Start out lying supine on your mat with your legs hip-width apart. Engage your feet, pushing your heels away from you.
  2. Inhale and raise your right leg, bending the knee and bringing the thigh toward your chest. Support your leg by grabbing behind the knee or on the shin and hug your leg tighter.
  3. Breathe here for 30 seconds, then release to the starting position and repeat with the left leg.
 

5. Happy Baby Pose (Ananda Balasana)

Transition: From Half Wind Release Pose, relax everything back down to the floor/mat, remaining on your back.

  1. On an exhale, bring your legs back up toward your chest.
  2. Inhale and grab onto the outer sides of your feet, widening your legs slightly and trying to bring your knees to your armpits.
  3. Spend 30-60 seconds here, gently pulling your feet downward with your hands. Try to very gently rock your body from side to side, just like a happy baby!

6. Revolved Abdomen Twist Pose (Jathara Parivartanasana)

Transition: From Happy Baby Pose, release your arms and legs down to the mat and bring them together.

  1. Inhale and sweep the arms along the floor, bringing them to a T-shape with your palms facing skyward.
  2. With your legs together and toes pointed, exhale and take a gentle twist to bring them both to the right, left leg stacked on top of the right. You can choose to keep them extended straight, or bend the knees so that your legs are parallel to your right arm.
  3. If it’s comfortable to do so, shift your gaze toward your left hand.
  4. Remain here and breathe deeply for 30 seconds, then inhale and return to the center.
  5. Repeat with your legs pointed toward the left.

 

7. Staff Pose (Dandasana)

Transition: From Revolved Abdomen Twist, release your legs back to the center, then slowly push yourself up to a seated position.

  1. Begin seated with your sit bones grounded and your spine straight and tall.
  2. Stretch your legs straight out in front of you, toes pointing up toward the ceiling.
  3. Close your eyes and breathe deeply here for 30 seconds.
 

8. Bharadvaja's Twist (Bharadvajasana)

Transition: From Staff Pose, shift your weight to the right, bringing your right palm to the floor next to you for support. Bend your knees and bring the right foot to the groin and the left foot to the outer side of your left hip.

  1. Inhale deep, mindfully opening and broadening the chest. Root the shoulder blades down away from the ears.
  2. Bring your left hand behind you and grasp the right elbow (or reach as close to it as you can).
  3. Gaze out over your right shoulder, taking deep breaths. Remain here for 30 seconds, then exhale and release the twist.
  4. Repeat on the opposite side.
 

9. Easy Boat Pose (Sahaja Navasana)

Transition: From Bharadvaja’s Twist, release back into Staff Pose with your legs straight in front of you.

  1. Bend your legs at the knees, resting the feet flat on the floor/mat close to your body. Raise your arms straight in front of you, parallel to the floor with palms facing inward toward each other.
  2. Now, engage your core and lean back slightly as you inhale.
  3. Hold the position for 30-60 seconds, then exhale and return to the starting position.

10. Upward Plank Pose (Purvottanasana)

Transition: Release back into Staff Pose with your spine tall, sit bones grounded, and legs extended in front of you.

  1. Place your hands on the mat next to your hips, fingers pointing straight ahead. Bring your big toes together, but rotate the heels outward a bit to create space there. Rotate your inner thighs down toward the mat slightly.
  2. Inhale and knit your shoulder blades in toward each other, lifting and broadening your chest.
  3. Exhale, point your toes forward, then reach forward and down with the bottoms of your toes. Plant your feet and toes firmly, keeping your big toes rotated in toward each other.
  4. Press down into your feet and toes, lifting your knees and pelvis. Relax your head back, but not so far that it disrupts breathing.
  5. Remain here, breathing deeply for 30-60 seconds.

11. Corpse Pose (Savasana)

Transition: Release from Upward Plank Pose into a supine position on your floor/mat.

  1. Begin by lying supine on the floor or mat.
  2. Inhale and widen your legs, bringing your feet to the sides of your mat (or a bit further than hip-width apart). Rotate the feet outward so that the toes point away from each other.
  3. Lift your pelvis slightly to tuck your tailbone, then release back to the floor and soften the lower back without flattening your back. Lengthen the base of your skull away from the back of your neck.
  4. Extend your arms straight up toward the ceiling and broaden your back by rocking your upper back from side to side slightly and pulling the shoulder blades away from each other. Then, relax your arms back down to the floor next to you, palms up and fingers relaxed.
  5. Focus on relaxing your face and neck muscles. Close your eyes, completely relax them deeper into your skull, then rotate them down as if to gaze directly at your heart.
  6. Stay here for as long as you’d like, letting your mind enter a meditative state while you progressively relax your muscles.
  7. When you’re ready to exit the pose, exhale and roll onto one side. Take a breath or two here, then exhale and slowly press your palms to the floor and lift your upper body to come to a seated position.

 

Namaste!