Feel tired and stiff every morning? Try these 5 yoga poses to start your day right!
The key to a happy, productive lifestyle lies in starting your day right. While a cup of coffee is perfect to provide a wake-up jolt, these 5 yoga exercises give your mind and body a ‘good morning’ boost.
Yoga exercises come with numerous benefits – physiological, psychological, emotional as well as spiritual. These yoga poses to do every morning are designed to stretch out your limps, get centred and begin your day infused with a positive energy!
1. The Standing Backbends and Forward Folds (Prishthasana & Padahastasana)
Begin by standing straight, your feet planted hip distance apart. Inhale deeply and raise your arms up above your head in a straight line. Bend backwards to elongate the spine, and exhale slowly. You can rest your hands on your waist if you are a beginner. Make sure that your head as well as neck are completely relaxed. Come back to a straight standing position, inhale, and bend forward. Let your head and neck hang and try to bend forward as far as possible, the aim being to touch your toes. Exhale, and return back to a straight standing position. Repeat 5 times.
This pose helps stretch the spine and allows fresh, oxygenated blood to flow easily to your brain. It improves blood circulation, loosens out all your limbs, while also preparing your body for further stretches at the same time.
2. The Tree Pose (Vrikshasana)
Keep your feet hip distance apart and spread the toes wide so that you are firmly planted on the floor. Fold your hands in front of your chest in a ‘namaste’, inhale deeply and bring one foot up to place it at the centre of the other thigh. Exhale, keep your core straight and raise your arms up above your head straight up, while balancing your body on one leg. Breathe deeply for 3 counts, and then slowly bring your raised foot back to the ground and arms back in front of your chest. Repeat with the other leg.
Vrikshasana improves your sense of balance and sets the right intention for your entire day.
3. The Warrior Pose (Veerbhadrasana)
Stand with your legs hip distance apart. Take a deep breath and bend your right leg at the knee, lifting the right foot upwards. Reach back with the right arm and hold your right foot (or ankle), lifting it further up. Balancing yourself on only your left leg, bend your body forward and stretch out your left arm to bring it perpendicular to your body. Hold the position for a couple of breaths. Then slowly bring your left arm back and lower your right leg to stand straight. Repeat for the other side.
The Warrior Pose offers you a complete body stretch. It helps to improve your flexibility as well as blood circulation.
4. The Bow Pose (Dhanurasana)
Lie on your belly with your arms by your side. Take a deep breath. Now bend your knees and reach out with both hands to grab hold of both your ankles. Try and keep your toes close together, flexing your feet. Lift your feet upwards as high as you can to stretch your spine. Make sure that you balance your weight on your naval and not your pubic bone. Hold for 3 counts, breathing deeply. Slowly release and let your arms and legs come back to the original starting position as slow as possible.
Dhanurasana is excellent for core strengthening and abdominal toning. It provides a gentle stretch for the spine and also balances out inner energies.
5. The Cat Pose (Marjariasana)
Begin on all four, supporting your body weight on your palms and knees. Place your wrist directly below the shoulder and spread all finger wide so that your weight is evenly distributed. Knees must be hip distance apart with your big toe touching the ground. Inhale and drop your belly towards the ground while your tailbone and head arch upwards, chest extending forward. Exhale and arch your spine upwards while you tuck your chin towards your chest and suck in your belly. Continue this with every inhalation and exhalation and keep your movements gentle, slow and steady.
The Cat Pose is excellent for increasing your flexibility and also relaxes your spine.
For those who spend 7 to 9 hours stuck behind an office desk, these yoga exercises provide a much needed gentle stretch for the spine, thighs, calves, shoulders, neck and arms. This is why we highly recommend you start your day with these 5 yoga exercises!
You may also enjoy reading this article on Desk Yoga.
How do you start your mornings? Would you like to try Yoga every morning? What are your favourite morning yoga poses?