If you are getting home at the end of the day, or getting up from your work from home space and trying to transition into rest mode before bedtime – a little bit of yoga can go a long way.
These 7 poses will stretch and sooth the body to unwind from your day and invite in a good night of sleep.
No props are needed for this sequence.
- Reclined Spinal Twist – Lower down onto your back with the knees bent and soles on the mat. Open the arms out to the sides, bending at the elbows in a cactus shape. Shift the hips over to the right side. Drop both knees to the left. Keep the right shoulder grounding down, and stacking the right hip over the left one. Find as much space between right shoulder and right hip, as you release the hip and low back. Repeat to the other side.
2. Butterfly Forward Fold – Come to seated. Bring the soles of the feet together and drop the knees out to the sides. Your diamond shape can be pretty long here, with the heels farther away from the pelvis. Fold forward from here, not worrying how far you go. Invite your muscles and spine to relax as you hold for a few rounds of breath.
3. Thread the Needle – Lift up to hands and knees, stacking the hips over the knees. Reach the right arm up to the sky, opening the chest to the side. Then thread the right arm through behind the left wrist. Bringing the right shoulder and ear to the floor. Maybe extending the left arm forward in front of you. Push into the left fingertips to roll the left shoulder back deepening the twist. Repeat on the other side.
4. Pyramid Pose – Come to stand at the top of your mat, folding forward and bringing the fingertips to the mat. Step the left foot back. Straightening both legs any amount, keeping the hips and shoulders square. Fold towards the front leg. Push into the back heel.
5. Low Lunge with Quad Stretch – Bend into the right knee and lower the left knee to the mat. Dropping the hips forward in a low lunge, keeping right knee stacked over the ankle. Stay here, or bend the left knee and draw the heel towards the glute. Maybe catching hold of the left foot, shin or pant leg. Keep the right foot firmly on the floor.
Repeat 4 and 5 on the other side.
6. Deer Pose – Lower down to a seat. Bring the right shin parallel to the front edge of the mat. Keeping the right knee straight out from the right hip. Bring the left knee out to the side, and shin parallel to the long edge of the mat. Looking for two 90 degree angles here. The focus is on the back leg, press and rotate the left hip down. Walk the hands back behind you. Staying up on the hands, or lower down to the forearms or maybe the back. Take several deep belly breaths as you hold here. Switch sides.
7. Seated Forward Fold – Forward folds are one of the best poses you can do to prepare for sleep. Extend both legs out straight in front of you. Let your spine round as you fold down towards the legs. Try to keep all 10 toes pointing straight up to the sky. Knees can bend as needed. While in this passive fold, ground, let go, and calm down.
Want a full 30 minute practice before you hit the sheets tonight? Hit play on the video below.