This self-love yoga sequence is full of juicy heart openers. Fill your own cup this Valentine's Day so you can bring your best self to the world.
1. Seated Pose
Start by sitting tall on a meditation cushion or block. Bring your left hand to your heart and your right hand to your belly. Noticing your natural breath. Feel it flow through your heart and into your belly. This is the prefect time to set an intention of self-love and gratitude for your practice that is just for you.
2. Restorative Twist
For this restorative twist, place your rectangular bolster along the middle of your mat. Bring your right hip to the bottom of the bolster with your legs bent, left leg on top of the right leg. With your eyes closed, mindfully lower your upper body down to the bolster with an arm on either side. You may also place a block in between your legs to release any tension in your back. Stay here for 2-3 minutes on each side. This twist allows your nervous system to relax.
3. Supported Heart Opener
This heart-opening pose is a great way to invite love into your practice.Sitting at the bottom of your rectangular bolster, slowly lay down. Bend both legs and bring the soles of your feet together, let your knees fall to either side. Feel free to support your knees with blocks if your hips are feeling tight. Allow your arms to fall to the ground on either side of you, feeling your heart open with every inhale and exhale.
4. Pigeon Pose
Start on your hands and knees to come into your pigeon pose. Bring your right knee to your right wrist, and place your shin on a diagonal angle then extend your back leg out. Take hold of your strap with your hands slightly wider than shoulder width apart. Bring your arms over your head stretching out your shoulders. You can invite another heart opener here, bending your back slightly while opening up your hips.
5. Camel Pose
Come down to your knees and sitback on your heels. Your knees should be hip distance apart. Start to engage your glutes and press your hips up off your heels and onto your knees. Place your hands on your lower back, fingers pointing down towards the ground. While your hands slowly make their way down towards your heels, arch your back and open up your chest towards the ceiling. Feel free to keep your chin tucked or let your head fall back if you feel comfortable.
6. Legs Up The Wall
This pose is the best way to give your legs and feet a break and return that old blood back to your heart. Start by lying down on your back with your sit bones against the wall and shift your feet up the wall (or couch). Let your heels press up towards the ceiling and feel the gravity weighing on your hips. You may also place a block or a blanket under your hips for a higher elevation.
7. Restorative Bridge Pose with Bolster
For this inversion, you will need a bolster. Start by lying flat on your mat with your knees bent and the heels of your feet close to your sit bones. Engage your glutes and your core to push your hips up and slide the bolster underneath your sacrum. Breathe deeply into your pose as your lungs open and the tension of your lower back releases
Savasana is the best self-nurturing pose for the end of your practice. You can place a bolster underneath your knees for extra support and let your body sink into your mat. Use this time to come back into your breath and your intention of your self-love you set at the beginning of practice.
Happy Valentine's Day!
Everyday activities like sitting at a desk, staring at a computer, hunching over a cell phone or even holding a bag consistently on one side can cause stagnancy, stiffness and fatigue in the body. As habits build, poor posture can easily become second nature, causing back and neck pain and even damaging spinal structures.
However, the main factors that affect posture are totally within our control, and aren’t difficult to change with consistent awareness. If you’re sitting at a desk for eight hours a day, the following tips will help support you in maintaining a better posture.