When you think of yoga, what do you imagine? If you’re like many people, you picture a super fit person who can fit their leg over their head or do a split. It’s true that this is yoga, but it’s far from the only way to do it. Yoga is an incredibly versatile aspect of many people’s healthy living routine, whether they can put their foot behind their head or barely touch their toes. Yoga is perfect not just for every day, but for all day long!
Here’s a few ideas to get you thinking about how you can better incorporate yoga into your daily routine:
First Thing in the Morning: Sun Salutations
Good morning and get ready to greet the day! The first hour or so of your day is actually the most important, because it sets the tone for the other 23. A few minutes spent in mindful asanas is all it takes to begin your day in a way that is beneficial to your body, mind, and soul. Dedicate a portion of your morning to sun salutations. It isn’t just about getting each pose right, but the movements between the poses as well. The transition from posture to posture is done at the same time as measured breathing. As you move through your chosen sequence, carefully monitor your breath. When you’ve finished with your daily Sun Salutations, you’re ready to get on with your day.
After a Meal: Yoga for Digestion
Your day got off to a great start, so let’s keep it going! You scarf down a quick breakfast and the morning hustle and bustle begins. Before you know it, you’re stopped dead in your tracks with a stomach ache. When your gut is off, your whole day can go downhill. There are yoga poses for digestion to regulate your bowels and decrease bloat that are incredibly helpful at a time like this. If you’re a yoga beginner, Big Toe Pose or Boat Pose will help. If you’re more advanced, give Bharadvaja’s Twist a try. This is a gentle and loving twist for the spine and abdominals. It’s sure to get your stomach and intestines moving the way they should!
For Your Daily Exercise: Yoga Fitness
You’re feeling better and ready to take a break from your responsibilities for some “me time.” It’s time to work out! One of the most amazing things about yoga is that while it can be relaxing, therapeutic, and a number of other adjectives, it’s also a really good way to get fit! Yoga poses designed for fitness will work your entire body, burn fat, and tone your muscles. Include poses, like the Dolphin Plank Pose and the Revolved Triangle Pose, into your daily routine and you’ll notice overall improvements in your strength and fitness. Even yoga beginners can do and hold a Warrior I Pose!
In the Afternoon: Yoga for Energy
It’s mid afternoon and your energy is fading fast. Before you reach for a cup of coffee, know that you can boost your energy levels in a more natural and healthy way with yoga! One or two back-bending yoga poses for energy will awaken your mind and body. Cobra Pose, also called Bhujangasana, fights fatigue and relieves lower back pain, boosting both the energetic and the physical body. You can also give Camel Pose, Bridge Pose, and Downward-Facing Dog a try.
At Night Before Sleep: Yoga Nidra
The day is winding down. Your body needs sleep to be happy and healthy. How is this sleep achieved? Of course, you need a premium mattress and other top bedding essentials so you have a comfortable and supportive place to sleep each night. You also need to make sure your mind is clear and your body is tired. Yoga is great for both of those! Yoga Nidra is one of the easiest yoga practices to learn. During your time in Yoga Nidra, you will rest comfortably in Savasana (corpse pose) and experience a systematic meditation that takes you through the Pancha Maya Kosha (five layers of self). Time spent in Yoga Nidra should relax you, ease your mental burdens, and leave you with a sense of wholeness. It promotes the deep rest and relaxation that your body, mind, and soul desperately need after your busy daily routine. Every evening that you end with Yoga Nidra, you have a much better chance of falling asleep easily and sleeping well that night.
Yoga offers a host of health and wellness benefits, even for a fitness beginner. Start practicing asanas on a daily basis and you’ll begin to feel the benefits right away. Make tomorrow the first day of your new dedication to incorporating yoga into your healthy lifestyle!