When we want to work out, we do not always want to break out in a sea of sweat or go so hard that we feel like our hearts are about to jump out of our chests. Sometimes we have those days when we have woken up at 5 am, done our morning chores, gone to work for eight hours, and walked in the door just wanting to relax and rejuvenate. We want something gentle on our bodies, and a gentle yoga sequence is a great way to silence that little nagging voice in our head telling us to work out.
Today we are going to help you satisfy that little voice telling you to stretch those muscles, and get you involved with a gentle yoga sequence to help you connect, relax, and rejuvenate your mind and body. Head on over to Udemy.com and enroll in one of our many yoga courses taught by trained professionals that are going to help you get the workout and relaxation combination that your body craves. Read on to see what you can expect from a gentle yoga sequence.
Who Can Benefit from Gentle Yoga
Before we get into some gentle yoga exercises, let’s take a look at the types of people or conditions that can benefit from gentle yoga. Gentle yoga is effective for:
- People with movement limitations or have disabilities or chronic conditions.
- People who have desk jobs and sit for most of the day. This will cause them to grow stiff limbs due to lack of activity.
- People recovering from surgery, illness, or injury.
- Women who are pregnant.
- Individuals looking for ways to reduce-stress or need help with weight management.
- Individuals who suffer from heart disease, chronic fatigue, or mood disorders.
Gentle Yoga Poses
Now, let’s take a look at some of the poses that you can try out for yourself that are associated with gentle yoga. Stretch your limbs and have fun in the process.
Child’s Pose: With child’s pose, you can connect with your breathing patterns. Follow these steps:
- Get down onto your mat and spread your knees hip-distance apart. Have both of your big toes touching behind you.
- Take in a deep breath, and as you exhale, move your torso over your thighs.
- Place your arms between your legs with your palms facing up, or, you may extend your arms out fully in front of you – whichever feels the most comfortable.
- Stay in this position while taking five deep breaths.
Downward Facing Dog: This pose works to envelop and hug your entire body.
- Get into the same position as child’s pose, and place your hands parallel to each other at the top portion of your mat. Keep your wrists under your shoulders.
- Inhale deeply.
- Lift your hips up and exhale. Move your body into a upside down “V” shape.
- Open up your fingers and create a straight line between your middle fingers and your elbow. As you are still in the “V” position, straighten your legs and lower the heels of your feet to the ground.
- Now, relax your head between your arms and hold this position for 5 breaths. As you do so, gaze through your legs towards your belly button area.
Mountain Pose: This pose will help you feel strong and centered.
- Get into the same beginning position as downward facing dog.
- Inhale deeply and look forward. As you exhale, step up to the top of your mat.
- Inhale and move back into a flat-back position.
- Exhale again and roll your body up to a standing position.
- At the front of your mat, stand with your feet together and your arms at your sides.
- In this position, make an internal statement, declaration, or dedication in your mind. Stay standing here for five breaths.
Standing Forward Bend: With this pose, you will be able to release tension in the area between your shoulders and the back of your skull.
- Stand at the front of your mat as you were doing at the end of your mountain pose.
- Inhale and reach out straight in front of you.
- Exhale and tighten your abs while folding your body forward. While you do this, tuck your chin in towards your chest and relax your shoulders. Point the crown of your head downwards towards the floor to extend your spine.
- Now, shift your weight forward with your toes, and keep your legs as straight as possible.
- Reach towards the ground and place your hands flat on the ground with your fingertips in line with your toes.
- Hold this position for five breaths.
Staff Pose: If you feel tension or stiffness in your back, the staff pose will give release to the entire portion of your back.
- Sit down on your mat with both of your legs close together.
- Place the palms of your hands flat on the floor next to your hips and press them firmly into the ground.
- With your arms as straight as possible, extend your spine and roll your shoulders away from your ears with your chin tucked into your chest. As for your legs, be aware of your leg muscles and wiggle your toes or flex your feet. While you are doing this, imagine that your back is as sturdy as a cane or staff.
- Keep this position for five breaths.
Butterfly Pose: You may remember doing this exercise in Physical Education. It is meant to release tension in the lower back and open up tightness in the hip area.
- Sit down on your mat and bend both of your knees bringing in your feet together so that the both of the soles of your feet are touching.
- Press your knees towards the floor with your elbows.
- Extend your arms out in front of you if you want to stretch further.
- Hold this position for five breaths.
Savasana: To achieve full restoration and relaxation, finish your gentle yoga sequence with a savasana.
- Lie down on your mat and close your eyes.
- Extend your arms from your body and lay with your palms facing upwards.
- Keep your heels about 15 to 20 inches apart and point your toes upwards.
- Keeping that position, shrug your shoulder blades down towards your hips and relax your lower body inwards towards the floor.
- Stay in this position for as long as you want. The goal of a savasana is for your heart rate to slow down and have your breathing return to a normal and soothing rhythm.
In addition to doing yoga regularly, remember to feed your body the nutritious and healthy food that it needs. Individuals who consume fewer calories, but choose higher quality and more nutritious food will live longer than those who do not. Health is not just about exercise, but also about proper nutrition. There must always be a balance!
The next time you feel exhausted and disconnected from your body or spirit, consider this gentle yoga sequence for full body and mind restoration. Let’s face it; we are not always craving a full thirty minutes of cardiovascular activity, or a sweat-filled jog at the park. Keep in mind that you are not alone in wanting to achieve peace and health with your body. There are plenty of other students who have found success through gentle yoga in our classes here at Udemy.com. Get into the right mindset and give your body some release!