With the increasing modern trend of health and fitness, many people are seeking ways to incorporate physical activity into their daily lives. Yoga is a great way to do just that! It can be low impact, gentle on your body and a great way to get moving and growing. It is also a great way to connect mind and body, as well as create time for stillness and relaxation.
Mountain Pose or Tadasana
An easy entry into yoga, this pose is meant to be done standing, feet firmly grounded and hip-width apart. The top of your head should reach towards the ceiling, as you draw your shoulders away from your ears. Open your chest as you reach your arms up, lengthening the spine. This pose is mostly about balance and alignment, making it a great starting point for any beginner yogi.
Tree Pose or Vrksasana
A moderately challenging pose, this pose requires finding balance and connection with your breath. Stand in Mountain Pose and shift your weight into one foot. Then, place the sole of the opposite foot against your inner thigh of your standing leg, as seen in the picture. Make sure to keep your hips square and aligned. If desired, you can bring your arms up in a “V”, or rest your hands somewhere for balance. Hold for fifteen to thirty seconds.
Downward Dog or Adho Mukha Svanasana
A popular pose in the yoga world, Downward Dog is an all-over body stretch. This pose starts from the ground, on all fours with your hands and feet shoulder width apart. From there, spread your fingers wide and push up, engaging your arms and lifting your hips. You should end up in an upside-down “V” shape, as seen in the picture. If it’s too difficult to get your heels to the floor, rest them on a block. Hold the pose for fifteen to thirty seconds.
Child’s Pose or Balasana
A great restorative pose, Balasana offers a break from standing and balancing postures, and allows for rest, recovery and relaxation. To create this pose, start from a kneeling position. Separate your thighs so that there’s some room for your torso to fit, and bring your big toes together. Sit back onto your heels and bow forward, reaching your chest as close to your knees as possible. Hold for fifteen to thirty seconds.
Cat and Cow Pose or Marjaryasana and Bitilasana
This one is a two-for-one! Cat and Cow poses are easy entry postures that offer an all-over spine stretch. To begin, come to an all fours position. For Cat Pose, round your back towards the ceiling and move your gaze to the belly button. To transition to Cow Pose, let your belly drop towards the floor and lift your chin. Alternate between the two poses, releasing and receiving this spinal stretch.
Warrior I or Virabhadrasana I