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Yoga Day 53

WARM-UP

1. Supine Arm Sweep I

Starting position: Begin this warm-up by lying supine on your floor/mat with your arms at your sides.

  1. Inhale and sweep your arms along the floor so that your arms create a T-shape with your palms facing upward.
  2. Exhale, then inhale and slide your arms once more so that your upper arms are next to your ears and your fingertips point behind you.
  3. Exhale both arms back to your sides, then repeat 3-4 more times.

2. Supine Arm Sweep II

  1. Begin in a supine position with your arms at your sides and palms facing the floor.
  2. Inhale and raise your arms straight up above you, wrists stacked above your shoulders.
  3. Exhale, then inhale and slide your arms once more so that your upper arms are next to your ears and your fingertips point behind you with palms facing the ceiling.
  4. Exhale both arms back to your sides, then repeat 3-4 more times.

3. Half Wind Release Pose (Ardha Pavanmuktasana)

  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.

 

4. Dead Bug Core Workout II

  1. Begin by lying in a supine position. Activate your core, drawing the belly button up and in while tucking the tailbone forward slightly.
  2. Inhale and raise both arms and legs straight up toward the ceiling.
  3. On your next inhale, bend your right knee and left elbow to a ~90-degree angle.
  4. Exhale and bend your left knee and right elbow to match the opposite arm and leg.
  5. Inhale and straighten your right knee and left elbow, leaving the left knee and right elbow bent.
  6. Exhale, then inhale both arms and legs straight up again.
  7. Repeat this series of movements 5-6 more times and feel free to experiment with speeding it up or taking it slower.

 

5. Staff Pose (Dandasana)

Transition: Release from Dead Bug Core Exercise B and raise your torso, coming to a seated position.

  1. Sit 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.

 

6. Seated Forward Fold Pose (Paschimottanasana)

  1. Begin in a seated position with your legs out in front of you, sit bones grounded and spine tall.
  2. Push your heels away from your body, engaging the feet and toes. Your arms should be by your side with your palms or fingertips pressing down into the floor.
  3. Inhale and keep the front of your torso long as you hinge forward at the hips and reach for your toes/feet.
  4. Remain and breathe here for 60 seconds, lengthening your torso forward and walking your hands forward with each exhalation until you can grasp the outer sides of your feet.

7. Staff Pose Knee Stretch (Dandasana)

Transition: Inhale your torso back up to Staff Pose.

  1. In Staff Pose, inhale and lift your right leg off the ground, keeping it straight.
  2. Exhale and bend your right knee, planting your foot on the mat a few inches in front of your bottom. Wrap your arms around the right shin, hugging it in as tight as possible. Breathe here for 30 seconds
  3. Inhale and extend your leg back out, relaxing it to the ground.
  4. Repeat on the left side for 30 seconds.

8. Half Lord of the Fishes Pose (Ardha Matsyendrasana)

Transition: Release and extend both legs, returning to Staff Pose.

  1. Begin in Staff Pose with your sit bones grounded and your spine straight and tall.
  2. Inhale and lift your right leg, bringing it over the left leg and planting your foot on the mat beside your left outer thigh.
  3. Exhale and bend the left knee, bringing the heel of your left foot toward your right sit bone OR keep your left leg straight.
  4. Inhale and broaden your chest, keeping the shoulder blades strong and down away from the ears.
  5. Exhale and slowly twist your upper body to the right, bringing your left elbow to the outer side of your right knee. Your left palm should be facing out to the right. Shift your gaze out past your right shoulder.
  6. Breathe here for 30 seconds, gently pressing your elbow against your knee to deepen the twist with each exhale.
  7. Slowly release the twist and return to the starting position, then repeat on the other side.

 

9. Cradle Pose (Hindolasana)

Transition: Release from the twist in Half Lord of the Fishes Pose, straightening your spine and extending your legs to return to Staff Pose.

  1. Inhale deeply, then exhale and raise your right leg, bringing the knee up to your chest and keeping your right foot flexed. You can keep your left leg straight, or bring it inward as if you’re going to sit cross-legged.
  2. Bring your right knee to rest in the crook of your right elbow, rotate the shin to run parallel to your chest, and rest the bottom of your foot in the crook of your left elbow.
  3. Remain here for 30 seconds, release your right leg back to the mat, then repeat with the left leg.

10. Seated Neck Rolls

Transition: Release from Cradle Pose, remaining seated.

  1. Relax your arms, placing the hands either on your lap or the floor. You can stay seated the way you are or bend your knees to sit cross-legged.
  2. Tuck your chin and slowly relax your head forward, feeling a stretch along the back of your neck and the base of your skull.
  3. Gently roll your head in a clockwise circle 4-5 times, then counterclockwise 4-5 times.

 

11. Wrist Rolls w/ Clasped Hands

  1. Clasp your hands in front of you, interlocking your fingers, and rolling the wrist joint first so that your dominant wrist deviates toward you, then away from you in a figure-eight motion.
  2. Repeat this motion for 30 seconds.

12. Cat-Cow Pose (Chakravakasana)

Transition: From your seated position in Staff Pose, bend your knees and draw your legs in, then rock forward, coming onto your hands and knees.

  1. Inhale and arch your back downward, pushing your tailbone up and outward. Tilt your head back slightly, keeping your shoulders engaged and opening the chest. (Cow)
  2. On your exhale, tuck your chin and tailbone inward, pull your shoulder blades apart, and round your spine like a cat that’s stretching or startled. (Cat)
  3. Repeat this movement for 30-60 seconds.

 

13. Balancing Table Top Knee-to-Nose Crunches (Bharmanasana)

Transition: Bring your spine to a neutral position, remaining on your hands and knees.

  1. 1. Beginning on your hands and knees, inhale your right leg up and extend it straight behind you.
  2. Exhale, tuck your chin, bend your right knee, and bring the right knee forward toward your nose.
  3. Inhale and release, returning to Table Top Pose.
  4. Exhale, then inhale and repeat 4-5 more times on the right.
  5. Repeat on the left side with the same amount of reps.

 

14. Child's Pose (Balasana)

Transition: Remain on your hands and knees in Table Top Pose.

  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.

 

15. Simple Grounded Shakti Flow

  1. Beginning in Child’s Pose, inhale your body forward, returning to Table Top Pose.
  2. Broaden the chest as you bring the front of your thighs, shins, and feet flat on the floor, bringing you to Sphinx Pose. Take 1-2 breaths here before moving on.
  3. On your next inhale, tuck your toes and lift your sit bones up and back, coming into Downward Facing Dog Pose. Take another breath or two here.
  4. Exhale your knees to the floor, stacking your shoulders above your wrists and hips above your knees in Table Top. Breathe here for 1-2 breaths.
  5. Exhale and sink your sit bones down and back as you push the floor away with your hands to come into Child’s Pose.
  6. Bonus: If you feel up to it, repeat this series of movements 1-2 more times with a little more speed.

PEAK FLOW

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

Transition: Plant your palms and extend your legs behind you, tucking your toes and inhaling up into Plank Pose.

    1. Inhale, 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. Crescent Low Lunge Pose (Ashwa Sanchalanasana)

Transition: From Downward Facing Dog Pose (Adho Mukha Svanasana), lift your right foot and plant it between your hands slightly right of center.

  1. Bring your right knee forward and your left knee on the ground, just far enough back to create a stretch in the front of your left thigh.
  2. Inhale and sweep your arms overhead, leaning back ever so slightly for a gentle backbend.
  3. Breathe here for 30 seconds.

 

3. Low Lunge Pose (Anjaneyasana)

  1. Remain in a low lunge, bringing your hands back to the floor.
  2. Breathe here for 30 seconds.

4. Revolved Crescent Low Lunge Pose (Parivrtta Ashwa Sanchalanasana)

  1. Beginning in a low lunge, inhale your torso straight up and raise your arms to shoulder level.
  2. Remain here for 30 seconds.

5. Runner's Lunge Pose (Utthita Ashwa Sanchalanasana)

Transition: Release from the side twist and exhale your hands back to the mat.

  1. Inhale your left knee up from the floor, coming up onto the tiptoes/ball of your left foot as you straighten your left leg back.
  2. Remain here for 30 seconds, breathing deeply.

 

6. Forward Fold Flow (Uttanasana)

Transition: From Runners Lunge Pose, inhale your torso up, step your left foot forward, and come into a Standing Forward Fold.

  1. Beginning in Standing Forward Fold Pose, inhale and raise your torso into a straight, neutral position. Place your hands on your shins.
  2. Exhale back down into a full forward fold.
  3. Repeat this flow 4-5 times.
 

7. Revolved Forward Fold w/ Bent Knee (Uttanasana)

  1. Begin in Standing Forward Fold Pose.
  2. Keeping your right leg straight, exhale and take a slight bend in your left leg.
  3. Inhale and lengthen your spine, twisting your upper body to the right. Your left hand or fingertips should be on the floor, while your left arm extends straight upward. Rotate your head to shift your gaze up toward your left hand.
  4. Breathe here for 30 seconds, then return to the center and repeat on the opposite side.

8. Mountain Pose (Tadasana)

Transition: Inhale and straighten your torso and legs for Mountain Pose.

  1. Stand with your feet parallel a few inches apart (or, if you need to widen your stance for better support and stability, hip-width apart).
  2. Lifting one foot at a time, spread the toes and ball of the foot, then return them strong and flat to the floor with your weight evenly distributed.
  3. Lift your sternum up, creating a strong, open upper chest without drawing the lower ribs forward.
  4. Draw your shoulder blades slightly inward toward each other, and down away from your neck and ears. Stack and center the crown of your head over your pelvis with your bottom jaw parallel to the floor.
  5. Remain here for 30 seconds, gathering your thoughts and tuning into your breath.

9. Tree Pose (Vrksasana)

  1. Begin in Mountain Pose (Tadasana).
  2. Bring your palms together in front of your chest. Begin slowly shifting your weight onto your right leg.
  3. 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.
  4. Challenge yourself to stay 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.
 

10. Eagle Pose (Garudasana)

Transition: Release from Tree Pose back to Mountain Pose.

  1. Begin in a standing position with both of your legs straight.
  2. Extend your arms straight in front of you, then bend your elbows ~90 degrees. Cross your arms with your upper left arm crossed above your upper right arm.
  3. With your left palm facing to the right, try to hook the fingers of your right hand on your left wrist or the lower palm of your left hand.
  4. Inhale and cross your right leg over your left. Shift your weight onto your left foot and hook the top of your right foot on the back of your left calf. Take a moment to find stability.
  5. On an exhale, bend your knees and slowly lower your tailbone as if you’re about to sit in an invisible chair, leaning the upper body forward slightly.
  6. Breathe here for 30 seconds.

11. Eagle Pose Crunch (Garudasana)

  1. Beginning in Eagle Pose, exhale, engage your core, and lean forward into a crunch.
  2. Inhale back up into Eagle Pose.
  3. Repeat 2-3 more times, syncing your breath and maintaining your balance.

12. Warrior II Pose (Virabhadrasana II)

Transition: Release from Eagle Pose back to Mountain Pose, then step your left foot back and rotate it slightly outward, aligning the arch of your left foot with the heel of your right foot.

  1. With your right foot forward and your left foot rotated outward a bit, pivot your body to face the left.
  2. Stretch your arms straight out to the side in a T shape and shift your gaze out to your right hand.
  3. Breathe here for 30 seconds.

13. Triangle Pose (Trikonasana)

  1. Begin in a wide-legged stance.
  2. Make sure your left foot is angled toward the left side of your mat while keeping the right toes pointed forward. Roll your right thigh outward so that your knee aligns with your first two toes.
  3. As you lengthen both sides of the waist, bring your arms up and out to both sides so that they are parallel to the floor.
  4. Inhale and extend your reach to the right, bringing your upper body over the right leg. Shift your hips back slightly.
  5. Exhale your right arm down, bringing the right hand to either your ankle, a block, or the floor. Rotate the front of your ribcage toward the ceiling, reaching your left arm straight up.
  6. Lengthen through the sides of the neck, keeping the neck aligned neutrally with the spine. Shift the gaze straight ahead or up toward your left hand.
  7. Release by pressing your feet firmly into the floor, leading your torso back up with your left hand.

14. Vinyasa II

Transition: From Triangle Pose, plant both palms on the mat and work your way down into Plank Pose.

  1. Exhale and lower yourself to the ground through the Four-Limbed Staff Pose, keeping your elbows stacked above your wrists.
  2. Inhale and extend your arms, pushing down into the floor through the tops of your feet and toes as you lift your torso into Upward-Facing Dog Pose.
  3. Exhale and tuck your toes, lifting your pelvis up and back, pushing yourself up into Downward Facing Dog Pose.

Repeat each pose in this segment, switching to the opposite side as necessary for asymmetrical poses.

 

COOL DOWN

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

Transition: From Vinyasa II, stay in Downward-Facing Dog Pose.

  1. Remain here for 2-3 full breaths.

2. Pigeon Pose (Kapotasana)

Transition: From Downward Facing Dog, inhale your right leg up, bringing your knee forward.

  1. Exhale the outer side of your right leg down onto the mat. Your right knee should be aligned with your right hip and your pelvis facing squarely forward. Lay the top of your left foot on the mat/floor, and keep your front foot flexed.
  2. Inhale and lengthen your spine, sitting up tall and broadening through the chest.
  3. Breathe here for 2-3 breaths.

3. Sleeping Swan Pose (Kapotasana II)

  1. Begin in Pigeon Pose.
  2. Inhale your arms up, energizing through the fingertips and feeling your sides lengthening.
  3. On the exhale, hinge forward at the hips, folding your upper body over your right leg. Keep the arms straight, bringing the palms to the floor. Relax your neck, bringing your forehead to the floor if you’d like.
  4. Breathe here for 2-3 breaths.

4. Revolved Pigeon Pose (Parivrtta Kapotasana)

Transition: Release your upper body back up into Pigeon Pose.

  1. From Pigeon Pose, bring your palms together in front of your heart, forearms parallel to the floor as you push energy through both hands.
  2. Inhale and lengthen the spine, then exhale and take a gentle spinal twist, bringing the left elbow to the outer side of your right knee.
  3. Take 2-3 breaths here.

Repeat poses 1-4, switching to the opposite side as necessary for asymmetrical poses.

 

5. Head-to-Knee Pose (Janu Sirsasana)

Transition: Release from Revolved Pigeon Pose and come into a seated position with your legs extended straight.

  1. Bend your left knee, bringing the bottom of your foot toward your right inner thigh, and heel close to the groin.
  2. Sit up tall, lengthening the spine as you inhale.
  3. Exhale and hinge at the hips to fold forward over your right leg. Reach for the sides of your right foot with both hands. Keep the spine and neck straight, your gaze down.
  4. Stay here, breathing deeply for 30 seconds.
  5. Raise your torso back up, extend your left leg back out, and repeat this stretch on the left leg.

6. Revolved Head-to-Knee Pose (Parivrtta Janu Sirsasana)

  1. From Head to Knee Pose, roll the chest open to the left as you inhale your left arm overhead, pointing toward your right foot.
  2. Breathe here for 30 seconds, then release yourself to a seated position.
  3. Switch legs and repeat.

7. Bridge Pose (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana)

Transition: Release from Revolved Head-to-Knee Pose and lower your torso to the ground so that you’re lying supine.

  1. Take a moment to completely relax the spine and bring awareness to your breath.
  2. Engage your back, core, glutes, and quads to lift your body up, keeping your shoulder blades planted. Use your arms for support - you can either have them palm-down beside you, or you can clasp your hands together underneath you.
  3. Hold this position and breathe here for 30, then lower your body back to the mat to release from the pose.
 

8. One-Legged Bridge Pose (Eka Pada Setu Bandha Sarvangasana)

Transition: Inhale yourself back up into Bridge Pose.

  1. From Bridge Pose, raise your right leg, extending it straight into the air. Push up through the heels, keeping your core strong.
  2. Remain here for 30 seconds, then lower back to the ground for a quick rest before repeating on the opposite side.
 

9. Happy Baby Pose (Ananda Balasana)

Transition: Relax your body back down to the mat.

  1. On an exhale, bring your knees 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!

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

Transition: Relax your arms and legs to the floor, remaining supine.

  1. Extend your arms out to each side like you’re making a T shape.
  2. Inhale and lift your right leg, bending at the knee ~90 degrees.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. On an inhale, roll your right hip back down to the ground, then exhale and release your leg back to the floor.
  6. Repeat on your left side.

11. Corpse Pose (Savasana)

Transition: Release from Supine Spinal Twist II Pose for a relaxing Savasana!

  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!