We understand that modern life doesn't afford us the luxury of loads of free time, but it is still important to take some time for yourself to connect to your breath and get your body moving! These poses are great to accompany a juice cleanse as well, as they increase circulation and aid in digestion, along with being gentle enough on the body not to cause fatigue. The benefits of stretching for even 10 minutes a day are numerous. Flexibility and a calm mind are just an added bonus! These poses can be done anywhere, anytime, and don't even require a mat....happy stretching!
Here are 10 easy, do anywhere, yoga poses for the busy moms and career women out there:
- Child's Pose
Start this sequence in child's pose as pictured above. Option to take the knees wide to stretch the groin and compress the hips. Take 5-10 breaths long smooth breaths via the nose here. The compression in the abdomen massages the internal organs, stimulating digestion and easing tension. Stress is often to blame for digestion issues, and child's pose offers us a place to unwind and calm down.
Taking a table top position with a long spine and the toes tucked under. Start to inhale and gaze up, taking your belly button down to the ground. On the exhale press through your palms and take the gaze down, round the spine, and tuck the tailbone under. Find 3 or 4 rounds of this flow. Along with massaging the organs and spine, this movement brings fresh blood to the epithelial cells which are responsible for healthy gut function.
- Extended Puppy Pose
From table top position, start to walk your hands forward while take the forehead down to the ground . The hips are over top of the knees. Take 5 breaths in this pose. Improves flexibility, especially in the spine. Relieves symptoms of chronic stress, tension, and insomnia. Strengthens and stretches the arms, hips, and upper back.
- Downward facing Dog
Coming back to your table top position, making sure your toes are tucked under. From here, start to press into your palms and take your hips up towards the ceiling. Making sure the spine is long before you slowly start to straighten your legs as much as possible without compromising the spine. Take 5 breaths in down dog. Done properly and consistently, the most noticeable benefits include: Stronger hands, wrists, low-back, hamstrings, calves and Achilles tendon. Decrease in back pain by strengthening the entire back and shoulder girdle.
- Camel Pose
From Downward facing dog, take your knees back down to the ground. From here, sit up on your knees and take your palms to the low back fingers pointing towards the ground. Start taking your chin up and lift the chest finding a back bend (you can also do this option standing). Option to stay here or slowly start to release your right hand down to your right heel and then see if you can release the other one down to the other heel, to find the full expression of the posture. Taking 5 breaths in camel pose. Increases flexibility in the spine, stimulates the nervous system, opens the chest and shoulders, improves circulation and digestion, and stimulates the thyroid.
- Standing Forward Fold
Start standing up, on an inhale lengthening through the crown of the head and on your exhale start to fold forward grabbing hold of your shins, ankles, or big toes. 5 breaths in this position. Practicing this pose stimulates the liver and kidneys, while improving digestion. It is also known to be therapeutic for stress, asthma, sinusitis, high blood pressure, and osteoporosis.
- Bridge Pose
Coming to lie down on the ground with the soles of your feet on the ground and arms down by your sides. Taking your feet hip distance apart and your heels quite close to your sit bones. As you inhale you lift the hips up, press into the soles of your feet and squeeze your glutes. 5 deep breaths here. While compressing the digestive organs, this pose also delivers fresh blood to the heart. This combinations relieves fatigue caused by poor digestion.
- Wind-Relieving Posture
Lying on your back with both legs long, bring your right knee into your chest, take your palms to the shin and squeeze it towards you. Relaxing your shoulders toward the ground and making sure your spine is long on the ground. Take 5 breaths with the right leg in and then switch and take 5 breaths with the left leg in. This pose is exactly as it's named, relieving abdominal discomfort. It also helps to release tension in the lower back, hips, and thighs. It soothes stiffness in the spine, while toning the muscles of the abdominal wall.
- Reclined Twist
Lying on your back, taking your hips over to the left slightly and then bring your knees into your chest. From here take your arms out wide and on an exhale slowly start to take the knees down to the right side. Possibly gazing to the left if it's okay on your neck. After 10 breaths here coming back through centre and then finding the other side. This twist helps to relieve stress and tension in the muscles along the sides and midsection of the torso, and it’s great for helping you digest big holiday meals. Holding a twist for a long time in a relaxed state helps move things along, including blood flow to the stomach.
The ultimate posture for all healing is Savasana. When you’re at rest, you’ll be tapping into your parasympathetic nervous system. This is also known as your “Rest and Digest” response. As you lie in savasana, you're allowing all stresses to melt away and you’re creating a healing environment for your body. Your blood will start to flow towards your digestive organs, your heart rate will slow, and your breathing will deepen. All of this increases oxygenation to the digestive organs. This also creates the ideal environment for digestion, cleansing, and healing.
A yoga teacher that works at Beach Yoga and is also a part of the juicing staff at Nature Pressed Juicery. She has a true passion for nutrition and wellness. She lives in beautiful Port Coquitlam and loves her community. For more yoga classes and information, email Christine at email@example.com or check her out on instagram @urbanwildyoga. We will be coming up with more for you in a Yoga and Juice event series coming soon. Stay tuned!