Do you take time to set your intention at the top of your day? I highly recommend taking a few moments on your mat each morning to be mindful, and determine one word that you want to carry throughout your day.
Feel good in your body after a night’s rest by moving through these 7 poses, and carry that with you off the mat all day long by returning to your one word.
- Puppy Pose – Start on all fours, with the hips over the knees. Walk the hands in front of you, melting your forehead and heart to the floor. Make this pose more active by keeping the elbows lifted off the mat, or bend the elbows and lower forearms. If you like you can have chin on mat instead of forehead. Take several rounds of deep breath here, thinking of how you’ll carry your word through your day.
2. Sphinx – Slide forward on to your belly. Push into the forearms and fingertips. Pull the shoulders back as you lift your heart. Push into the pubic bone, lengthening tail to heels.
3. Reverse Butterfly – Stack your forearms, and rest your forehead down. Widen the knees and bring the soles of the feet together. Keep the hips grounded down. For some people the feet will get down to the floor, for others (like myself) they will stay lifted. If this is too intense, windshield wiper your feet side to side here instead.
4. Low Lunge – Come to table top, tuck the toes and lift the hips up and back to down dog. Kick the right leg up, then step the foot through between the hands. Drop the left knee down to the ground. Push into the legs, sink the hips down and lift the arms up. Bring the hands together at the front of the heart. Take into a twist by crossing the left elbow over the right thigh. Push into the hands to lift off of the front leg.
5. High Crescent Lunge – Bring the hands down to the mat. Tuck your back toes, lift the left knee off of the mat. Inhale to lift and length, reaching the arms overhead. Exhale to hinge forward, sweeping the arms back at your sides. Find a diagonal line from crown of head to the back heel. Do 3 rounds like this.
6. Eagle Pose – Bend your elbows in front of you. Loop the left elbow under the right one, binding the arms once or twice. Step the left foot forward, wrapping the left thigh over the right one. Maybe tucking the toes behind the shin of the standing leg. Keep both of your knees bent. Draw the low belly in. Release and unwind.
Repeat 4 through 6 on the other side.
7. Butterfly Fold – Lower down to a seat. Bring the soles together and drop the knees out to the sides. Maybe hold onto the feet. Inhale to lift and lengthen. Exhale to fold down. Maybe bring the arms in front of you. Relax the arms, shoulders, head and neck.
These poses come from a quick 10 minute morning practice, check it out below.