As we near the end of Spring, our Yoga Curator, Amy G, has curated these five yoga poses to rinse out the digestive organs and release any stagnant energy in the body, ready and refreshed for the Summer months ahead.
Balasana (Childspose) w twist:
Bring your knees wide and toes together, sink your hips back towards your heels and stretch your arms forward, relax your forehead down to the ground. Enjoy a deep stretch across your sacrum, all through your torso and down the arms. Take your right arm and reach it underneath the left arm out to the side, turn the head to face the left. Take at least 10 breaths rotating the torso and then change sides.
Why it matters: Healthy compression for the digestive organs and joints of the lower body, gentle twist to increase circulation and blood flow around spine.
Parsvottanasana (Intense Side Stretch):
From Childspose, come up to hands and knees and step your right foot forward. Lift your back knee off the earth and ground your back heel down. Your feet should be hip width distance apart and about a leg length distance from front to back with both legs straight (keep a soft bend in the front knee though). Use blocks under your hands if you need some extra height for your hips and hamstrings. Inhale and extend your chest forward, exhale and fold forward over your front leg. Try and keep your hips square by pressing firmly into both feet. Stay for 5- 10 breaths and move on to the next pose.
Why it matters: Deep stretch for the back of the body, tones legs, improves balance and alleviates compression in the lower back.
Parivrtta Anjanayasana (Revolved Crescent Lunge):
From Parsvottanasana, slide your left leg back and bring your knee down, bend your front knee so you are in a deep low lunge, then reach your hands high. Take a few breaths in your Crescent Lunge. Keep your tailbone long to the earth, and press your left hip flexor forward a little. Bring your hands together at your chest, lean forward to lengthen the spine and then rotate over the the right. Let your left forearm lean on your thigh, and reach your right arm high to the sky. Stay for 5-10 breaths. Release your hand to the earth and step back to a childspose. Begin again from Parsvottanasana with left foot forward.
Why it matters: Strengthens legs and challenges balance whilst deeply twisting around the digestive organs, and spine.
Utkata Konasana (Goddess Pose):
Standing in the middle of the mat, step your feet wide apart, turn your toes out and come down into a high squat position. Track your knees over the ankles, drawing them out to the little toe edge side of your foot. Sit into your squat as deep as you can! Slide your hands to the knees and start to rotate your torso left to right; drop your right shoulder down and gaze to the left, and then your left shoulder down and gaze to the right. Pulse side to side for a few breaths. Settle in to the sensations in your strong legs here. To come out, press into your feet and extend your legs, bringing them back together.
Why it matters: Opens the hips and chest whilst toning the lower body.
Viparita Karani (Legs up the wall Pose):
The ultimate relaxation and integration pose, allow your body to soften and your worries to float on by. Lie on your back near a wall and swing your legs up so that your feet are resting comfortably on the wall. Make sure your lower back and spine has space to relax into the earth here. Allow the legs to be heavy on the wall. Stay for a few minutes, and then bend the knees, roll on to one side and then come up to a seat, with your back against the wall. Take deep belly breaths.
When you’re ready to come out, gently open your eyes and have a big body stretch, ready for the day ahead.