BIRD DOG | PARSVA BALASANA
Stablise the core, test your balance & build strength in the lower back. Add this to any warm up or cool down where the midline will be tested.
Try keep the belly braced, butt down & your hips square, as you alternate opposite arm and opposite leg.
CAT COW | BITILASANA MARJARYASANA
An easy, gentle way to warm up the spine and open up through the chest, upper back and neck.
DOWNWARD DOG | ADHO MUKHA SVANASANA
It’s our home base in yoga, and for good reason stretching out the shoulders, hamstrings, calves, arches and hands all in one.
There’s no perfect way to ‘down dog.’ As a rough guide, keep your hands shoulder width apart, spin the biceps forward and the triceps back. Lift the tail bone & try get your chest to chase your thighs. How much or how little you bend your knees will be different in each body.
While this twist can help you improve mobility + flexibility in the core and lower back, bend the elbow to get the most delicious opening through the chest + shoulders.
Lie on the belly, bring your right arm into a cactus shape, the left arm beside your chest. Roll onto the right hip + try kick the top leg up and behind you. Hold, then switch.
TWISTED DOWN DOG | PARIVRTTA ADHO MUKHA SVANSANA
This variation of down dog will work deeper into your hamstrings, shoulders, torso + ribs. Not to mention, helping your overall balance.
Shorten your dog by taking a step or two in towards your hands. Widen your feet so they’re hip width distance apart. Take your right hand to your left ankle. Hold, then switch.
BULLY STRETCH |
This ain’t your traditional asana. Let’s say it’s now part of the Crossfit lineage.
I’ve started implementing into my practice to open up through the shoulder. Great way to prep the joint and increase mobility.
After ‘Nancy’ and the bulk OHS’ my shoulders are singing.
CHILDS POSE | BALASANA
I’m always reluctant to tell my students they can ‘rest’ in child’s pose.
While it can be a way to release, often after a workout or during my practice, I’ll bring my forehead down to the mat, knees out wide and extended my arms out as far as possible in an “active child’s pose.”
A helpful cue is imagining scooping out through the underarms to activate and stretch into the upper back and shoulders.
SADDLE | SUPTA VIRASANA
This is heaven to relieve tired legs post squatting or a big running workout. My thighs + hip flexors always feel it first, but it’s also a great way to lengthen through the abs, knees and ankles.
PLEASE! Avoid this variation if you have any back, knee or ankle problems. Standby for half saddle or just avoid altogether (there’s always something you CAN do!) Start sitting upright and then ease back as your body allows.
LIZARD | UTTHAN PRISHASANA
I stand corrected. It DOES have a sanskrit name (OOT-ahn preesth- AHS – anna) I’d just never learn it.
Lizard, one to maintain happy, healthy hips. The intense hip opener also works into the hamstrings and the groin.
You can come down onto the forearms, choose to drop the back knee or keep it lifted.