Everyone who practices yoga, or any physical regimen, knows that a full practice session is always best. Having acknowledged this fact let’s talk about options. If we intend to stay connected with our bodies, feeling happy and fit, we cannot follow an all or nothing strategy. We truly need to be flexible and have a game plan for those times when life gets overly busy. Yoga Breaks
really work! There have been times in my life when taking an hour for an awesome yoga session was out of the question. The idea of not doing yoga at all was not an option for me so I came up with some ‘mini’ routines (10-15 minutes) to keep myself on track.
Each session consists of one main posture, one neutralizing posture and one counter-posture. Then five minutes of conscious breathing at the end. If you like, sun salutations may be woven in before the main pose, between the main and counter pose, and after the counter pose before the breathing exercise. Please see the following example:
1. Main Posture: West-side Stretch (Paschimottanasana)
Work dynamically by reaching for the feet on each complete exhale then leaning back until the abdominal muscles contract on each inhale. Continue to move with your breath until you feel able to relax in the exhale position while breathing deeply. Hold for as long as it feels right for you on this day.
2. Neutralizing Posture: Staff Posture (Dandasana)
Bring the shoulders over the hips and the arms overhead with the shoulder-blades drawing down the back. Hold here for 5 deep breaths.
3. Counter-Posture: East-side Stretch (Purvottanasana)
Take your hands to the ground about a foot behind your hips and lean into your arms. Press into your hands lifting your hips to the sky and hug your shoulder-blades into your back body opening your heart. Hold here for as long as it feels great.
4. Breathing Exercise: Alternate Nostril Breathing or Balancing Breath (Nadi Shodhana)
To practice: Make the classical mudra (gesture) with the right hand, curling the index and middle fingers in toward the palm. Closing the right nostril with the thumb, exhale and inhale once through the left nostril. Then, closing the left nostril with the ring finger, exhale and inhale once through the right nostril. Go back and for the like that for five minutes. Breathe naturally without straining. There should be no noise, jerks or pauses.
Please share your ideas for Yoga Breaks because we would love to explore.
Love and Peace;