Like I talked about in my previous post, there are many benefits to practicing yoga. I want to talk about which poses benefit which areas of the body.
It’s obvious that just about any yoga pose will slowly loosen your muscles, help build your strength, and tone your body. But I will give you some specifics. Keep in mind, there are many more poses than the examples I will give.
Pigeon Pose: Start in table top, lift your hips back into downward facing dog then lift your right leg with your foot flexed. Slide your leg forward to the back of your right wrist. Angle your right shin under your torso and bring your right foot to the front of your left knee, behind your left hand. Now your shin should be resting on the ground.
This is a great stretch to practice if you want to be able to do the splits. The further forward your right foot is, the more sensation you will feel, deepening the stretch. It is also important to keep your foot flexed to protect your knee.
As a beginner in this pose, you should bend your knee as much as you need (as you see in the picture, my knee is bent quit a bit) and as you practice more, begin to move your foot forward until your leg is bent at a 90 degree angle.
Head-to-knee forward bend (Janusirsasana):
This may be an easy stretch for those who are already, at least slightly flexible. As for me, I was not flexible one bit when I started yoga, so when I was able to bend all the way down, it was a significant achievement.
Plank, high plank, and forearm plank
Low Plank (Chaturanga): Start in plank and lower down to where your arms are parallel with your body, holding it slightly above the ground.
Body Toning Poses
Crow (bakasana): Start with your hands flat on the ground in front of you, fingers spread out. Bend your knees and rest them on your tricep and lean forward until you are strong and balanced enough to get both feet off the ground.
This pose takes practice and determination (took me about 2 months and still mastering it). It takes arm stability, core strength, and balance. Practice enough and you will get there. And trust me, it’s a great feeling once you accomplish it.
Now, I’m gonna show you the poses that benefit our bodies in other ways.
Better Sleep Poses
Forward Bend (Uttanasana):
Child’s Pose: Sit with your knees pointed out in opposite directions and your toes touching. Bend forward as far as you can, stretching out your back and pushing into your legs.
This pose really helps open up your hips and stretches out your back.
Chair Pose: Stand straight with your legs together and sit your hips back into a squat with your body leaned forward a little and arms in the air.