Practicing Restorative Yoga without props is a great way to relax, improve flexibility, gain strength and regain energy. By using your body’s own weight, you can obtain a peaceful state where your body and mind can become balanced. Restorative yoga poses can be modified to meet the needs of anyone with physical limitations, so don’t worry if you don’t have props to use.
Supported Child’s Pose (Balasana)
Supported Child’s Pose is a great pose for those with physical limitations, if you can’t get up to a seated position start with a slight variation in which you are kneeling and then lowering your torso to the floor into the full supported version of the pose. Place a bolster or blanket on the floor to support your torso or place your arms in a comfortable position on the floor. Begin by taking deep breaths while focusing on total relaxation of your legs, hips and arms. Remain in this pose for as long as it feels comfortable.
Legs Up The Wall (Viparita Karani)
Legs Up The Wall is a great pose for when you are feeling tired and to help alleviate any discomfort from stress, anxiety or headaches. To get into this pose begin by sitting with a bolster against a wall, then shift your body weight so your legs are propped up against the wall and your torso is supported on the bolster or blanket. Begin by taking slow deep breaths and focus on relaxing your body from your toes to your head. Remain in this pose for as long as it feels comfortable.
Bound Angle Pose (Baddha Konasana)
The Bound Angle Pose is great for beginners and those with physical limitations who want an easy practice that still can yield great results. To enter this pose gradually widen your legs while laying on your back. If needed you can prop your hips up with a bolster or blanket to ensure that you’re in a comfortable position. Remain in this pose for at least 10 breaths or as long as it feels comfortable. This pose can help alleviate stress, calm the mind and improve posture.
Supine Twist (Supta Matsyendrasana)
The Supine Twist pose is great for gently stretching out your spine and easing any tension or pressure in your body. To get into this pose, begin by laying on your back and bring both legs together. Slowly bring your legs up and towards one side. Depending on your comfort level gently hug your legs in or place a bolster or blanket underneath your body. Slowly twist your torso in the opposite direction and remain in the pose for 10 deep breaths or until it feels appropriate. This pose can help reduce stress, improve posture and balance, increase flexibility and promote relaxation.
Restorative poses are a great way to find moments of rest and relaxation each day. Whether you are using props or not, it is important to ensure that each pose is done with mindful awareness and that you listen to your body to ensure you are not pushing yourself too hard. By taking the time to focus on relaxation, these poses can help you feel relaxed and rejuvenated.