For many people, the start of a new year means new resolutions. If your goal was to get mentally or physically fit, you’re in luck! Better still, you can do so from the comfort of your own home. All you need to get started are some flexible yoga leggings and a lightweight vest. In this article, we explore some of the more obscure yoga poses that have fantastic benefits.
Twisting Child’s Pose helps to improve circulation and blood flow. Additionally, the asana can be used to aid digestion. For best results, try Twisting Childs Pose with a couple of yoga blocks underneath your hands. To practice the asana, kneel down on your mat and rest your hands on the floor in front of you. Sit back on your heels, reaching your arms forward to lengthen both sides of your waist. Next, move both hands toward your left knee. If you’ve got some blocks to hand, place one underneath your head to keep your neck aligned. You are now in Twisting Child’s Pose. Hold the asana for 30 seconds before switching sides.
Half Tiger Pose is designed to boost circulation. Additionally, the posture stretches the ankles, calves, and feet to remove tension. To practice the asana, begin in a plank position. Your shoulders should rest over your wrists and your body should form a straight line. To maintain balance, spread your fingers apart and press your palms into the mat. Engage your abdominal muscles and bring your right knee into your chest. Finally, lift your stomach and drop your left heel closer to the mat. You are in Half Tiger Pose. Hold the asana for 30 seconds before repeating on the other side.
Twisting Lizard can be used to tone the abdominal organs and improve their function. Additionally, the posture opens the hips and chest and increases flexibility throughout the body. To practice the asana, begin in a low lunge with your right knee bent. Next, rest your left hand on the floor underneath your shoulder. Raise your right arm above your head and twist it to the left, turning your head to gaze behind you. You are in Twisting Lizard. Hold the asana for 30 seconds before repeating on the opposite side.
Dolphin Pose helps to regulate digestion and tone the core muscles. To practice the asana, begin on all fours. Setting your knees directly below your hips, bring your forearms down to the floor keeping your shoulders above your hands. Once in position, bring your palms together whilst keeping your forearms on the floor. Next, curl your toes under and slowly lift your knees away from the ground. Lengthen your tailbone and lift your bottom towards the ceiling. Your body should now form an upside-down ‘V’ shape. At this stage, younger practitioners should keep their knees bent slightly. Pressing your forearms into the floor, engage your shoulder blades and draw them towards your back. In this position, do not let your head hang; instead, support it between your upper arms. You are in Dolphin Pose. Hold the asana for around 30 seconds for best results.
Reclining Big Toe Pose alleviates tension throughout the body. In turn, the posture helps to balance the nervous system. To practice the asana, begin lying flat on your back. Gently bend both knees and place your feet on the ground. Next, lift your right leg off the mat and begin to draw your knee towards your chest. If it helps, you can use your hands to bring your knee in. Slowly straighten your left leg and rest it down on the mat. Using your fingertips, gently grip the toes of your right foot. If possible, try to straighten your right leg. If your leg doesn’t straighten all the way – that’s fine! As long as you can feel a stretch through your ankle and calf, the asana is doing its job. You are in Reclining Big Toe Pose. Hold the position for 30 seconds before switching sides.
Designed to balance the nervous system, Supported Bridge Pose keeps your head below your heart. Additionally, this simple posture can benefit the digestive system. To practice the asana, begin laying on your back. Bend your knees whilst keeping the soles of your feet touching the ground. Relax your arms and let them drop slowly to the sides of your body. Tuck your chin into your chest then lift your hips off the floor. Finally, slide a yoga block directly under your lower back. You are in Bridge Pose. Hold for 30 seconds before removing the block and lowering your back and bottom down to the ground. To increase the stretch, practice a higher lift by rotating the yoga block.
This pose is so simple that is can be practised anywhere! As well as facilitating lateral movement of the neck, the asana stretches the shoulder and trapezius muscles to relieve tension. To practice the asana, begin by sitting or standing tall with your shoulders relaxed. When you’re ready, slowly move your chin towards your chest. Next, draw your right ear toward your right shoulder. To increase the stretch, use your hand to apply gentle pressure on the head. After a few seconds, repeat the stretch on the opposite side.
If you’re not already using Corpse Pose, you should be! The restorative asana is ideal to end your sequence with. Designed to relax the body and mind, the asana can help to relieve tension throughout the body. To practice the asana, all you need to do is lie down on your back and relax your arms by your sides. Throughout the posture, keep both legs extended. You are in Corpse Pose. Take a few minutes to focus on your breathing and feel the tension disappear.
Whether you’re an experienced yogi or you’re just beginning, incorporate these yoga poses into your routine for a healthy body and mind. If you’re practising at home, try lighting a scented candle or incense stick to help you focus. If your mind is still wandering, try using a yoga jewellery or setting the scene with some calming music.