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Yoga 101 >> Energizing Poses

Posted Feb 23 2013 5:41pm
I think we're all feeling it. The grey, the cold, the wet, the blah. It just kinda gets to you this time of year. The holidays are long gone, and spring is just a liiiiiiittle too far away to bring relief. Getting into your body is an amazing way to snap out of the doldrums, and I think for a lot of us, absolutely essential. I know when I stop paying attention to my physical body, I feel anxiety start to creep in, I feel lethargic, and it's hard to feel inspired creatively.

These poses are all really energizing, and will definitely get the blood flowing and get all the good juices {yes, that's a technical term ;)} flowing again!

The first is bridge pose. I'm showing sort of a "medium" height bridge below, but you can also wiggle your shoulder blades together and clasp your hands together to get more height. You can also stick some pillows or folded blankets under your hips for a more restorative version. Whatever way you choose, you're getting the blood flowing back towards your heart, expanding your chest and taking deeper breaths, and gently releasing the spine into a back bend.
Another really energizing pose is camel. I'm showing two different variations on this, depending on how bendy your back is. Please PLEASE be very careful with this pose, it can be pretty intense. Start off slowly, and only keep moving backwards if it's okay with your body today; just keep checking in with yourself as you go along. This has many of the same benefits as bridge pose, but you're able to really open up through the chest and the neck. I tend to be really tight in the neck, so I love the additional opening I can get in this pose. When you finish with this pose, come out veeeery slowly, and come down into child's pose for several breaths. I guarantee you'll feel your heart pounding and the blood moving all around when you're done!


The last energizer is a breathing technique. Basically, you just close off your left nostril and take slow inhales and exhales through only your right nostril. The right side of our body is energetically associated with the sun (HA), and the left with the moon (THA). The point of Hatha yoga is to bring these two elements into balance, so when the "Tha" side of things (cool, slow, dark, etc.) gets to be a bit much, we can stimulate the "Ha" side (warm, lively, bright, etc.) to even it out. Place your second and third fingers on your Third Eye Point (the space between and just above your eyebrows), and use your ring finger to close your left nostril. Continue breathing like this for 1-3 minutes.

Try one or all of these to put a little spring back into your step! And let me know how they worked for you if you do. If you'd like more detailed instructions on how to do each pose, Yoga Journal is a great resource with lots of pictures and descriptions.

Have a lovely rest of the weekend!

shanti >> sondra
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