Do your babies or animals join you on the mat? Because my practice is largely done at home (whose isn’t these days?) my cats and dogs regularly join me in my practice. So I figure why not embrace it!
Try these 7 poses out for a full body morning yoga stretch – with or without company!
- Reclined Pigeon – Lay down, with feet on the floor and knees bent. Cross the right ankle over the left knee. Reach through with the arms and pull left knee and thigh towards belly. Moving right knee away from body. Relax the head, neck and shoulders. Only using minimal arm strength.
2. Laying Spinal Twist – Lower the left foot to the floor, uncross the legs. Move hips to the right. Drop both knees to the left. Extend and reach the right arm out to the side. Pushing into the right shoulder. Creating as much space between knee and shoulder as you can.
3. Bridge Variation – Return to center, with knees bent and soles on mat. Bring arms down beside you, shrugging shoulders away from the ears. Lift the heels off of the floor. Push into the balls of the feet to lift the hips up in bridge. Hold the hips up as you lower and lift the heels. Keep the ankles steady. Do 10 rounds or so.
Repeat 1 through 3 through on the other side.
4. Plank Variation – Come to hands and knees, with the palms under the shoulders. Spreading the fingers wide, pushing into fingertips and knuckles. Extend the legs back behind you to find plank. Keeping one long line from crown of the head down to the toes. Feet hip width apart. Keep steady as you drop both heels over to the right side. Lift heels to center, and then drop to the left. Repeating side to side in windshield wiper motion.
5. Three-Legged Dog – Shift the hips up and back to downward dog. Kick the left foot up towards the sky. Bend the left knee, open the hip. Squeeze and lift as high as you can. Straighten the leg and place the foot down. Repeat other side.
6. Wide-Legged Child’s Pose – Bring the knees down to the mat, taking them wide and bringing the big toes to touch. Shift the hips back to the heels. Walk the hands forward as you lower forehead to the mat. Hold for 10 or so deep breaths.
7. Neck Release – Come to sit comfortably. Roll the shoulders down. Drop your right ear towards the right shoulder. To change the sensation, lift the chin up a bit, or tilt it down a bit. Hold for several deep breaths. Come through center. Then drop left ear to left shoulder to repeat.
These 7 poses come from a quick morning class I shared on YouTube, featuring Taco the foster cat. Check it out below.