Most of us are always running errands, for the family and to visit or attend the parties in the coming weeks, everybody wants to look their best. One great solution to ease out stress and look your best in yoga. Yoga is mainly known for its soothing effects, but it can also help one tone and energize the body. Yoga has some really uplifting benefits that start with performing some gentle backbends, such as Extended Mountain or Upward Dog or even a Bridge pose. Extending the spine opens up, or stretches the tight chest muscles. When your chest opens up freely, you tend to breathe more comfortably in order to optimally fill your lungs. This deep breathing fosters mental alertness and physical energy and helps boost your body positivity.
Here is some yoga pose that can help you boost your body positivity:
1# Upward Dog
With your hands, hips, thighs and feet on the floor, point your toes slightly to the soles of your feet while facing the ceiling. Your hands should be still and should be aligned right under your shoulders. Inhale slightly and then straighten your arms widely, pressing through your hands and trying to lift your hips off the floor. As soon as you lift your hips, slide them slightly towards your hands. Try to open your chest and gently slide shoulder curves in the downward direction. Hold this position for one breath as you try to look slightly upwards. To release, slowly raise your hips and get onto your hands and knees before transitioning to Downward Dog pose that has similar benefits. Lengthen your upward body through the spine and rollover your shoulders back and then lower them in order to encourage the idea of deep breathing and performing a good stretch in the chest and the front portion of your shoulders.
2# Mountain Pose
Place your hands gently on your heart. With your feet and hip wide apart and lying parallel to each other, stand rooted and tall. Keep your chest lifted, and make sure all your four corners of each foot are planted on the ground. Hold this position for about 10 slow breaths. Pausing at the start of a yoga flow gives you the chance to keenly observe how your body is feeling without any judgment, while you are slowing down the breath and are enjoying the present moment. It also encourages a good posture as the spine lengthens upward.
3# Cow or Cat Pose
Come onto all fours, with knees directly underneath hips and hands directly underneath shoulders, if needed, fold a blanket and place it on the yoga mat as a cushion to your knees.
Cow Pose: Just inhale and then lift your complete chest area and tailbone toward the sky, relaxing your belly into the ground.
Cat Pose: Exhale and round your back, gently tucking your tailbone and bringing your chin toward your chest. That will make one cycle. Do at least six cycles, inhaling and exhaling with each transition.
Moving in between these two poses warms up a person’s spine, arms, and wrists. It shifts your focus toward your heart as you are trying to lift your chest and then it opens up in cow pose and then you return your body in cat pose.
4# Low Lunge
Step your right foot to the front of the mat, keeping the left knee down. Gently shift your hips in the forward direction. Your right knee should be carefully placed over your right ankle. Place your hands gently on your heart while lifting your chest. Hold for about ten slow breaths and later repeat on the opposite side. This pose tends to ground the body, support its balance, and then strengthens your legs and spine. By placing your hands on your heart, you focus on the center of compassion.
5# The Pyramid Pose
Place your right foot gently over the front of your yoga mat and then step up your left foot backwards, keeping the legs straight and still. Position your left foot gently at a 45-degree angle and then try keeping your right foot pointed straight ahead. Fold your upper body right over your front leg, by placing your hands on yoga blocks or any stacks of books if they do not reach the mat. Direct your gaze to a few feet ahead of the floor. Hold this position for about five to ten slow breaths and then repeat the same on the opposite side. As you tend to bow towards the ground, you can create a moment for the purpose of introspection and gratitude. Take this one opportunity to thank your body for all it has done while lifting, bending, and propelling you forward in life.
6# The Supported Warrior III
Step forward with your right leg, folding your upper body over your front leg. With your hands over the blocks or over the books, try to lift your left leg, keeping your torso parallel to the floor and at your hip level. Try to keep both your legs straight, your hands in a relaxed position, and your left foot flexed. Hold for about five to ten slow breaths and then repeat the same on the opposite side as well. As you are trying to balance, you tend to practice the idea of patience with yourself. If you wobble or stumble, that probably will gently tell yourself that it is okay. You can give yourself permission to begin again from the start. Trying means you are growing.
7# The Camel Pose
Kneel down over your knees, hip-width apart and your thighs should be perpendicular to the floor. Press your hips in the forward direction and then place your hands gently on your lower back for support as you try to lift your heart toward the sky. If you are comfortable then gently release your head backwards. Hold for about five to ten slow breaths. This pose often helps in supporting the spine’s flexibility and also provides a deep stretch in the area right over the hip flexors. As you are trying to lift your chest, which is an area that people often tend to protect, you are opening up your heart from the within in order to receive love—from both the outside world and from yourself.
8# The Child’s Pose
Open your knees as wide as the mat, feet together, and drop your hips to your heels. Place your forehead carefully over the mat and lay your arms and hands right behind you. Relax and Hold for about five to ten slow breaths. This grounding pose provides a very deep stretch in the thighs and it also eases the tension in the back area. When you think of yourself as a loved child, self- compassion comes to you effortlessly.
Vivek Roy is an enthusiastic Yoga blogger and traveler from India. He has done YTT 200 Rishikesh. He loves to travel and share the knowledge of yoga around the world. For more information about him visit his website Sattva Yoga Academy.