Welcome everyone .
Thank you so much for joining me .
My name is Cassandra and I'm going to take you through this practice , which is designed to help relieve tension aches and pains specifically in your hips as well as in your lower back .
This is perfectly suitable for beginners , but truly , it's an all levels practice .
I think anyone who's experiencing tightness , stiffness , tension in this area will greatly benefit from it .
No props are required and we'll start sitting .
I'm gonna turn to make it easier for you to see what I'm doing .
But start sitting with your right shin , slightly staggered in front of your left one and you wanna equally ground both sit bones into the floor lift and lengthen through your spine .
And we're gonna start walking our hands out in front of us and you might stay up a little bit higher , you might come down onto your forms or if it works for you , you can fold all the way down .
So we're looking to find that first stretch down into our right hip and right glute and the forward fold also gives us the opportunity to start stretching into our low back .
So take about five deep breaths here in and out through your nose .
And no matter how far you go into this pose , try to relax your shoulders , relax your chest and imagine you can breathe directly into the spot where you feel this the most .
Take one more full , deep belly breath and start to push your hands into the mat , slowly lifting your way back up and from here , let's extend our right leg out to the side .
So you still have your left foot in towards the inner thighs and you can choose where and how much you open both legs away from one another .
We're gonna start with the side bend .
Side bends are so good for our low backs , reach your left arm up and over .
So think of rolling your left shoulder back .
So you're not folding towards the floor .
This is really more about creating length along the left side of your waist and see if you can relax your head here , really stretch out long through your left fingertips down that left arm .
And now looking down towards your right leg , now , go ahead and fold on over .
So you're folding towards your right leg and your shin .
I'm making this a passive fold , meaning I'm letting my spine round .
I'm not pushing , I'm not pulling just like gravity , pull you into it and you should feel a nice stretch along the left side of your lower back .
So we are not chasing sensation here .
Two more breaths , use arm strength to push into the ground and slowly lift back up .
And now from here , we're going to find our way into dear pose .
So you can just align your left leg .
You want your shin parallel to the top of the map , your left knee in line with your hip and you can send your right leg back .
So I have my right knee in line with my right hip and my right chin is in line with the long edge of the mat .
This is a deep hip stretch for the inner internal rotation , start to walk your hands back as you press that right hip down and you're kind of walking back in a diagonal here .
You don't need to go very far in this one .
For some people .
This is very easy and you might be able to lay down directly on your back .
But I know for me , this is a pretty intense one .
We don't do a lot of internal rotation in yoga .
So this can get quite tight in a lot of us .
When we work on hip flexibility , we often think about the outer hip , the sides of the hip and into the glutes .
But it's really important to think of the hip joint from all angles , inner thigh , front of thigh , outer thigh , the whole thing , let's walk our hands back in , lift your chest and one last pose here before we switch sides you can help that right leg come back .
And this time you're going to cross your right ankle over the top of your left knee for your seated pigeon pose .
If the hips are really tight , you're gonna keep that left leg almost straight .
Otherwise you can walk that foot in to bring the chin and the foot closer towards you and use your hands to push into the floor to lift your heart up a little bit more .
And I like to just walk a little bit side to side , press your shoulders down and away from your ears .
We'll come into our first pose on the other side .
So you wanna have your left shin staggered in front of your right one .
Both sit bones pressing down lengthen up through your spine and then start to fold forward , maybe staying up on your palms on your forms or coming down forehead to the mat or to the back of your hands .
Five slow steady breaths here , always reminding your upper body to relax a little more as if you could breathe directly into your outer left hip .
Let's come out of the forward fall .
Take your time .
Keep your right leg as it is and extend your left leg out to the side opening at any amount .
And we start with a side bend first .
So keep your spine lifted , reach your right arm up and over , roll your right shoulder back as if someone was pulling on your right hand , get a little bit more length and lift through the right side of your waist and you can turn your face towards the floor towards your left chin and then fold on down and I'm turning my palms to face up towards the sky .
I'm not pushing , not grabbing , not forcing my way deep into a pose , especially when we're working with lower back .
Less really is more .
Try not to hold your breath .
Let's walk our hands in lifting up into our dear pose on the other side .
So you want your right shin aligned to the top of the mat , your right knee is aligned to your right hip .
And then you're bringing your left knee in line with your left hip , shin to the long edge of your mat .
Start to press and roll that left hip down as you walk your hands back kind of in a diagonal .
And you might notice that one side feels very different from the other .
We're not trying to replicate the exact same experience .
It's very , very normal to have asymmetry in your body .
Go ahead and walk back up our last seated pose into our reclined pigeon .
So you can bring that left leg out in front of you .
You're crossing your left ankle over the top of your right knee and bring that right foot in any amount .
Remember to roll your shoulders down and away from your ears .
Think of lifting your heart up and maybe rock a little side to side .
Drawing your lower belly in a little and let's release tabletop pose for cat and cow .
Bring your hands under your shoulders , knees underneath your hips as you inhale , drop your belly , lift your gaze curl tailbone up , exhale round and contract chin to chest .
Take a few more here .
Same thing going with your breath and try to get this motion to flow evenly in your low back , your mid back and your upper back .
Yeah , you've been stretching a little through your shoulders .
Take your last one here .
Inhale , drop the belly lift .
The gay is tailbone up , exhale .
Push the floor away from you as you round .
Coming back to neutral , we'll find down dog , but we're gonna do a wider version .
So walk your hands out , you're gonna tuck your , your toes under to lift your tailbone and your hips up and walk your feet out towards the edges of your mat .
So a much wider stance than what we would normally do in our down dog .
And you might want to bend your knees generously as you push into your arms and push your chest towards your thighs , relax your head , relax your neck , really .
Draw your lower belly in here and now bend your knees even more just so you can bring your feet together a little more so hip with distance apart .
Let's reach our right leg up towards the sky .
Bend your right knee , open up your hip , big stretch here and we'll step our right foot in between our hands to the top of the mat .
Right knee is on top of your ankle back , knee comes down to the floor adding a twist here .
So we're stretching into our hips and then for our low back , we're twisting right hand onto your thigh , push your hand into your leg as you roll your right shoulder back and open up through your chest .
Try to melt your hips forward and down towards the floor .
Getting deep into the soas deep into the hip flexor .
Looking down to the mat again , start to straighten your right leg and you're welcome to just stay up here or I find it easier to just let my hips come back to sit on my left heel and then we're gonna fold down again .
I'm letting myself round here .
I'm not pushing , I'm not pulling right .
I'm just letting my body come into the version of the forward fold and the depth of the forward fold that is most appropriate .
So , targeting the back of our hip at the insertion point of the hamstring and stretching along our low back , drop your head .
And if you had folded down , like what I'm doing here , you need to lift your chest up a little bit and we're gonna bend into that front knee again , coming into a table top pose .
So just bring your right knee next to your left , we'll find thread , the needle parlo , spread your right arm underneath .
You , dropping shoulder and ear to the floor .
Once you're there , lean a little bit , push into your right hip and you can just push into your left hand .
You can also straighten your left arm up overhead .
So just another twist .
If you had your left arm straight , slided back , push into your left palm , come up , table top hose , it might feel good to take one round of cat and cow in .
He'll drop the belly exhale round and contract come back to neutral and we'll find our downward facing dog tuck your toes under , lift your hips up and back and you can bend your knees here .
Second side , let's reach our left leg up to the sky , bend your left knee , open up your hip .
Really squeeze into your glutes on ja on a low lunge .
Step your left foot in between your palms to the top of the mat .
Ane comes down to the floor , keep your right hand anchored for support , melt your hips down , bring your left hand to your thigh and really push your hand into your thigh in order to lift and rotate that left shoulder back .
Like gravity , pull your hips down , lower towards the floor and facing down to the mat .
We'll find our half splits again .
Hanna either staying up nice and high or just letting your hips rest on your right heel this time .
Folding forward five breaths in the pose .
You can absolutely keep a bit of a bend in that left leg .
It does not need to be perfectly straight .
You do not need to force your way into any kind of pose .
If you had folded all the way down , just lift your head and chest up .
We're meeting in tabletop poses for parlo thread the needle with your knees under your hips .
You're gonna thread your left arm underneath your shoulder and ear to the mat .
Push into your left hip and maybe keep your right hand pressing into the floor .
You can also straighten your arm up overhead .
Slide your right hand back down , push into the palm re extend up cat and cow inhale , belly down .
Lift your gaze , exhale round and contract and just push back into a child's pose .
Belo your arms can either be out in front of you or you can bring your arms back behind you palms , facing up , take a few breaths here , you can rise up .
We're just gonna lay down on our backs .
So bring your legs out in front of you .
You can come on down Ananda or Happy baby pose .
Start by bringing your knees in towards your chest and then you can widen them towards shoulders and armpits , pulling down onto your thighs .
This might be enough for your hips and for your low back .
But if you'd like to go further , you can grab a hold of your feet or your toes and stack your ankles over your knees .
Elbows can push open into your thighs a little bit , maybe swaying a little side to side .
Remember if it's too much , just keep your knees bent .
Don't worry about holding onto your feet .
This is meant to be a therapeutic practice for hips and low back .
So there's nothing to prove are not trying to make things super intense released from this pose set to Banda Van Goa , which is just bridge pose , feet come flat to the floor with your knees bent , really shrug your shoulders down and away from your ears .
Palms , face up towards the sky .
You want to feel your feet push into the floor , curl your tail bone up and start to lift your hips low back and mid back off the floor , hug through your inner thighs a little bit .
So you're actively pushing into your big toes , think of digging down into your heels and dragging them back towards your shoulders .
You're gonna feel your hands strings your glutes and your low back engage , which is exactly what we want .
Press your pelvis up a little bit higher .
One more big breath and exhale release inch by inch .
Let's cross our right ankle over the top of the left knee , reclined pigeon pose very similar to what we did at the beginning of class .
You can go ahead and reach back as you pull that left knee in this is your first option .
If you'd like to also add a hamstring stretch , you're going to straighten your left leg and pull from here .
Give it one more big breath here in the stretch .
And if your left leg was straight , bend into your knee and you're now going to overcrossing .
So , really wrap your right thigh over your left one trying to stack your right knee on top of the left .
Just a moment here in shoelace pose , see if you can hold on to your feet as you pull them down , getting deep into the outer hips and we'll find a laying spinal twist .
So keep your legs as they are , let your left foot come flat to the floor , open your arms out into a little cactus shape and you might wanna lift your hips and move them to the right so that both knees and thighs can drop down to the left .
Try to keep your right shoulder pressing on the floor .
And if it feels like too much to have your right thigh crossed like this , you can uncross them and just have one leg over the other and rise on up with your knees on across the legs , bring your feet flat to the floor .
Knees bent , relax your arms down bridge pose again , push into your feet , squeeze your glutes and lift up , hug through your inner thighs .
Push down into your heels and drag them back towards your shoulders , lengthen your tailbone away from your lower back as if you're trying to flatten out your lower back .
One more breath here and we curl down inch by inch , reclined pigeon .
Cross your left ankle over the top of your right knee and reach through with your arms , either holding here or straightening your right leg and reaching up a little bit higher towards your ankle .
One more .
Squeeze , bend your right leg , shoelace , pose .
So wrap your left thigh over your right one or reach for your feet or whatever you can grab a hold on .
We're not here for very long .
You're just pulling down and moving your feet away from one another .
You can also just hold on to your knees and pull them in this way and let's release into our laying spinal twist , open up your arms , you can move your hips over to the left , both knees and thighs .
Drop down to the right , push down into your left shoulder .
Five breaths here .
One more big inhale .
And let's lift back up on cross your legs and it might feel good just to let your knees drop from side to side in a windshield wiper motion and coming into Shana .
You might want to do this the traditional way with your legs out in front of you .
But if you are experiencing tension in your lower back , sometimes straight legs just aggravates it .
So you can widen your feet and just let your knees fall in towards one another .
Placing your arms , wherever is comfortable taking our last few moments of stillness .
We'll take 10 slow deep breaths right here .
Really important not to skip Shabana .
This is your body's opportunity to really integrate all of the work that you've done .
The worst thing we can do is to rush out .
So just relax and breathe here , start to deepen your breath , to reenergize your body wiggling fingers .
It might feel good to reach your arms up over head to stretch out your legs out in front of you .
We'll roll to one side , push your hands into the floor to come up and take a seat sitting in any way that is comfortable for your hips and your low back .
We'll join our hands together at heart center .
Take a moment to really acknowledge the effects of your practice , noticing what's changed , what feels different .
Now , as opposed to when you first stepped onto your mat and we'll close our practice with the chant of one time .
Let's inhale to chant big breath in .
Oh I must stay .
Thank you so much for doing this therapeutic practice with me .
I hope you're able to notice some differences in your hips and in your low back .
Please leave me a comment down below .
Let me know how this went for you .
And if you'd like to stay a little longer , you can follow this class up with this five minute meditation right here .
I'll practice again .
With you soon and I must stay .