Hey , welcome to class today .
I will guide you through a gentle practice , which has a lot of elements from Yin Yoga .
This is gonna be a good one for your rest day or if you're starting out or if you want to take it easy or if you are a beginner to this practice , all you need for today's class is a strap or a belt .
I'm using my jujitsu belt here .
So whatever you have , that kind of looks like this grab that also have one or two pillows nearby and then let's get started in puppy post .
Come onto the mat , bring your hands down to the ground far away to the very front of your mat .
Make sure the hips are right above the knees and start to melt the chest down towards the ground .
You can stay on your toes or your untucked toes up to you .
If it's accessible , rest your forehead down to the mat , let the heart melt down towards the ground .
It doesn't matter if the chest or the heart or the forehead or anything touches the ground , just find a place where you can relax for five or so breaths close your eyes , simply breathe in and out through the nose .
Take that time to arrive to get ready for the practice .
If you feel the sensation underneath your shoulders where your armpits are kind of like a stretching sensation .
Breathe into that area a little bit deeper .
Just all your knees come into a table top , come onto all fours .
Stay on the toes for this one , straighten your arms , send the hips back .
You're stretching out the toes and the feet with the arms straight .
Start to move forward with the shoulders as far as you can so that you feel the wrists then send the hips back .
Let's do five more just like that forward and back .
We will not be spending much time on our hands today in this class .
We don't need to be doing a very in depth wrist warm up just a little bit to loosen up everything .
Last two .
Last one .
Very good .
Come onto your toes , walk the hands back , come into your squat at the back of your .
It's ok if your heels lift up , maybe just take it as a goal to work towards a deep squad .
A lot of times it has to do with ankle flexibility and we are working on more videos to increase your range of motion and increase your mobility .
So those are coming .
If you are one of the ones that can't squat fully down , it's all good .
Take a couple of breaths here , especially if this is not a position .
You are in a lot highly recommend being in a squad more just throughout the day .
Maybe make it a goal just to stay in a squat for 10 minutes every day .
Start to straighten your leg legs forward , fold , keep your knees bend .
If you want to bring your feet about hip distance apart .
If you like grab opposite elbows or just in your , your arms , your hands here relax .
Just let the upper body be heavy , hang forward .
I really like to integrate a practice like this one into my week after doing strong practices and uh lots of strength training and handstand training and all of the , the strong things .
It's nice to take one or two days a week where fully to a practice or restorative practice or something more hybrid like today where it's more of a gentle flow .
Nothing too crazy .
Nothing too much .
It still has lots of elements from a practice where you can fully relax and restore deep breath in and out through the nose , breathe more into your belly .
Also send some more breath into your upper back .
Perhaps you feel a sensation of expansion in your upper back when you take an inhale , focus more on that if your legs straighten your legs more .
Otherwise , no worries if they are banned or if they are banned a lot , as long as you're feeling some kind of gentle stretching sensation at the back side of your legs and your back .
It's all good .
Release your hands down , bend your knees , roll up through the spine to standing nice and slow from the bottom .
All the way up to the top .
Come up to the standing , reach your arms up .
Take a deep breath in with your right hand .
Grab your left wrist , stand tall side , bend to the right side with your right hand , pull on your left arm on your left wrist , pull that arm up and over your head to your right side .
Breathe more into your left side body .
Engage your glutes , stand nice and strong , stable on your inner release through center , switch sides , grab your right wrist , side , bend over to the left again .
Engage the glutes , stand tall , find some more length through the right side body , reaching over to the left side in her back to center , both arms up and over your head .
Excel forward fault , walk the hands forward for downward facing doc keep your knees bend for now , especially in the beginning or perhaps you need to because your hamstrings are tighter .
Then just stay there with the knees bend , press into your palms , move the chest towards the thighs , firm down into the inner palms .
The hands use your fingertips to grip into the mat .
Breathe into the sensation underneath your shoulders .
We we're trying to open up your shoulders here and if you want , you can walk your dog peddle one leg the other or straighten your legs more .
But keep that nice and long line of energy going through the hands up towards the hips lengthening out and opening their shoulders .
So on the movement again , connect to a place of stillness within and which then that starts with stillness through the body .
Keep the breath going nice and slow through the nose .
Just three more here .
Lift your heels , bend your knees , walk to feet forward between the hands .
Take a deep breath here .
Lift up halfway forward , fault , step your right foot , back , heel to the left foot all the way to the left .
So you're kind of at the edge of your mat .
We're coming into a lizard lunch both hands down to the ground .
If that's already too deep for you , then come onto blocks or pillows or something to elevate your body a little bit .
It can also come to the fingertips to get some more height here .
Send the hips forward and down .
Breathe into the right side of your hip , the front side of your right hip .
If you like , move forward and back , you can also make a circle with the hips .
Just see what feels good , explore , breathe .
I'll grab that strap if you have one nearby , set the right foot down to the ground , keep the right hand on the ground , start to bend your right leg .
And now with your left hand , you're reaching towards the right foot , grab the pinky toe side of the right foot or if that's not accessible , you use that strap and you hook that around the foot and then you pull that foot towards your hips , send the right tip forward and down as you gently pull that right foot with your left hand towards your hips .
So you start to stretch and lengthen the right quad , the right thigh , keep pressing into your right palm .
So you're not just dumping the way down to the right shoulder , push the ground away more .
Just find that balance of , of effort and ease where you can be stable , but you're not over working and get your right glute if that's accessible and feels good for you , rotate your upper body more to the left .
Look over your left shoulder , let's stay for three more breaths .
Try to create more length through the spine .
You're lengthening from the right knee all the way up through the right thigh , the hip towards the right shoulder and the head .
Very good .
Release that right foot , both hands down to the ground .
Now , step that right knee outside the left foot .
I sat the hips down , come into something like a seated twist position , bend your right leg a lot .
That means bring the right foot close to your hips and then sit kind of upright before we're coming into a twist .
We first want to lengthen the left it band .
So with your right arm .
You're giving your left leg a big hug , you hug all around that leg and then pull that leg more towards your chest .
The left hip uh should , should lift up .
You can either just hold that leg with one hand or you can also grab your both palms and just pull that leg towards your chest .
Now that you hear your lengthen and reach actively the left hip more down towards the ground .
And if you feel a sensation in your left outer hip , perhaps going up the left outer thigh , then that's all good .
That's exactly what we're looking for .
Let's stay here for three breaths .
Perhaps you have to move around a little bit to find that sensation .
But especially if you're new to this practice , this is great because usually you feel the sensation pretty fast and pretty strong in your body and that's all we're looking for then connect the breath very good .
Now release that left leg , maybe the left hip melts down towards the ground .
Perhaps it's touching the ground .
But as you're moving into the seated twist , don't worry about the left hip being on the ground or not .
In fact , if you're forcing the left hip down , although it naturally wants to lift up , you might just do more damage to the body than good for your body .
So keep that in mind , oftentimes , uh in very traditional styles , uh they , they keep teaching to keep both hips on the ground , which is really not how the body is meant to move .
And by forcing anything , you just and very risky and dangerous territory .
So stay away from that in your left hand behind you towards the back of the match .
We're coming into a seated twist so you can again hug that leg in if it's not accessible for you or you that right forearm outside the left thigh or the right triceps or the upper arm outside the left thigh .
Take a deep breath in to lengthen exhale , twist to the left , let's do three more .
Just like that with your own breath .
Very good .
Your inha brings you back to face the front and out of that .
Now we are just on your mat a little bit .
Bring the right hip more to the right edge of your mat .
Send that left leg back .
We're coming into 90 90 or it's also called depose .
It's similar to a pigeon variation but not quite pigeon .
It's a more think accessible post for most of us .
And it also offers a lot more things we can do here .
So your right leg is forward .
Both legs are in 90 degrees kind of angle .
So your right shin to the right thigh is kind of 90 degrees .
Your right foot is more flexed than pointed and same with your left foot and the left leg , left thigh , left chain kind of like 90 degrees everywhere here and just relax here .
Sit up , right .
You're looking for a sensation in the right outer hip , perhaps even in your right hamstring or right it band on the nuclear right thigh .
So perhaps that means you just stay here or you melt the chest forward or if your chest is already all the way down to the ground and you still don't feel anything , then you want to move that right leg , more forwards , you're going to a to more than 90 degrees and then you fold forward again .
Perhaps that's the modification you need to take here .
I'll just stay here with 90 degrees again .
Remember this is supposed to be a more chill and gentle practice .
So no need to force yourself deep into the post .
Let's stay here for several breaths to make sure that you are comfortable .
Everything feels good .
Give yourself time to ease into the pose .
No need to come to your full depth right away .
Knowing that we will be here for a little longer , maybe one or two minutes total .
If this is uncomfortable for you here and it's too much work to hold yourself upright .
You can also put a couple of pillows between your right thigh and your chest .
So you have , you fill that space up with pillows so you can relax more into this post .
But if you already feel very open , come onto your forearms .
Was your eyes breathed , focus on the breath coming in and out through the nose actively send and guide that breath into any areas of your body where you feel it , where you feel the sensation , where your mind feel like it needs some more healing sense that , that force that energy from the breath into that area .
Let's take five more breaths here .
It's really important to breathe nice and slow to activate your sympathetic nervous system and move more into a state of relaxation and rest and recovery .
Especially if you lengthen that exhale , you actively contribute to that transition into that state .
To see if we can let the exhale be a bit longer and slower than the inhale slowly .
Will this push yourself back up ?
Rotate your knees to the left , both fields are on the ground , knees are lifted , bring the soles of your feet together for butterfly post , grab your feet , open the knees up like a book and then fold forward around your back as well .
So you're not only stretching the lower body , but also your upper body and your back , tuck your chin to the chest .
Let's stay here for five breaths .
Doesn't matter how deep you can go into this , how much you're folding forward .
Maybe you are very much upright in this one .
All I want to ask you is do you feel a stretching sensation somewhere in your lower body , your hips , your hamstrings or your back ?
If yes , then you're doing everything right .
We're here to feel good and not to perform any poses that have to look a certain way .
I think we are past at times of yoga practice where it has to look a certain way .
You need to make this work for your body feel good breathe .
And by doing that , you reap all the benefits from the practice and not by looking a certain way because you saw this in a book or a magazine , no one cares release , push yourself back up .
Let's rotate to face the front of the mat .
Cross your left ankle or shin in front of your right , roll over your knees , come back to a table top and then to a downward duck .
Let's all meet and downward facing doc waste no time arriving .
Settling into the pose .
Push the ground away .
Maybe your knees are bend , that's fine , externally , rotate the arms , push the ground away .
Just two more breaths .
Firm into the inner hands .
Feel your fingertips bend your knees , walk the feet forward between the hands , take a deep breath and lift up halfway , exhale forward , fold , step your left foot back to the back of the mat .
Heal to the right foot to the right for lizard lunch on the other side , stay on your fingertips if you want to or come onto the palms or if you feel like it come into the forearms .
Of course , you do , you move the hips around forward and back , maybe in a circle , both directions , whatever feels good , we're just here for about three more breaths .
Beautiful set , the left knee down to the ground .
Start to bend your left leg .
Use that strap if you need to bend your left leg , use your right hand to reach for that left foot .
Grab the pinky toe side or throw that strap over the foot .
Then by pulling on that foot towards the left hip , you stretch and lengthen the left quad , send the left hip forward and down and get your left glute gently press into your left palm to keep the left shoulder engaged to support you .
Breathe into your left quad , your left thigh , which you are currently lengthening and stretching .
If that feels good or if it's accessible for you , rotate your upper body to the right , perhaps look over your right shoulder .
But don't worry if that's not accessible for you , it really doesn't matter .
We're looking for that thigh stretch on the left side , slowly release both hands down , step that left knee outside the right ankle , outside the right foot .
Now , I am moving a little bit away from the camera , but we have been here before but on the other side .
So just listen more than , than looking at the screen .
Keep the right tap lifted .
If it wants to bend your bottom leg , your left leg a lot with your left arm , hug your right leg , tie it into the chest , give your right leg a hug the right hip is for most people lifting up , that's great , actively lengthen and reach that right hip down towards the ground until you feel a sensation in the right outer hip and perhaps the right it band somewhere in your right hip area and stay there .
Breathe nice and slow into that area , into the sensation .
Perhaps it takes some more time to move around to find that and maybe you will not find it at all because you're very open or you don't need the the post here .
You ultimately will feel it when you need it the most and perhaps you will not feel it today .
That's fine .
But you can still focus on the breath right .
So you can still and the state of meditation let go of that right leg , let the right hip release down .
But perhaps until it stays lifted for you don't force it down .
Listen to the body come into a seated twist , bring the right hand behind you towards the back side of your right of your mat or more behind you .
Perhaps off the mat , use your left forearm or your upper arm to hook into and outside the right thigh for a seated twist length .
Now to the spine , inhale , exhale , twist , rotate to the right .
Repeat that move with the breath inhale to lengthen , exhale to rotate .
Twist two more and release you readjust on your mat .
Bring your left hip more to the left edge of your mat .
Send your right leg back for 90 90 or in yoga .
This is also called , do you find what works for ?
You start with what worked on the other side but know that both sides are of course different .
So you might need to do something completely different on this side .
Check for those 90 degree angles , somewhat 90 degrees .
Keep the feet Dorsey flexed or not pointed to the , instead the toes are more pointing towards the knees on both feet .
Sadly , and take your time , walk the hands forward or use the pillows or come to the full arms .
Same as the other side .
Take your time to arrive and to surrender into the post .
Keep focusing on the breath in and out through the nose .
Let's stay for about two minutes .
Come back to the breath , as I mentioned before .
Can you breathe a little slower out then you breathe in lengthen your exhale in comparison to your own health , close your eyes .
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90 90 we have lots of exciting content coming where we are working a lot on mobility and joint health and joint strength in this position .
Really excited to share that stuff with you slowly release , push yourself back up , move both knees over to the right kind of like a wind shield by upper to the right an extent both legs were coming into a seated straddle position .
Once you find your position here , walk your hands forward into a seated straddle forward folder .
Let's stay for about 10 breaths here .
Nice and easy .
Relax into it .
Melt into it , send the breath into your belly and then out into the upper back , feel how the lungs expand that perhaps slight stretching sensation in your upper back area .
As you take the inhale .
If you want to go deeper and melt deeper , that's fine .
Just don't force anything .
Take the last two breaths to slowly come out of the pulse .
Walk the hands back , bring your hands underneath your knees to help the legs bend , rotate to face the front of the man , bring the right ankle and shin in front of the left , come to a seated position .
If you feel more comfortable sitting on a pillow or block or anything to elevate the hips , then do that .
Now stay where you are facing the computer screen .
I will just rotate to the side so you can see me better or your TV , or whatever you're watching on ipad or phone , find a position that's comfortable for you .
We're gonna be here for several minutes to finish up our practice with a breathing exercise called alternate nostril breathing and then continue with a meditation together .
And if you want to come into Shabaz and afterwards you of course can and absolutely should .
We will use our right hand and from the right hand , you will use the right thumb and the right ring finger , you can connect the right ring finger and the pinky finger and kind of keep the index finger and your middle finger relaxed .
So that with your right thumb , you close the right nostril with your right hand , ring finger , which is connected to the pinky finger .
You close the left nostril will be alternating between the thumb and the ring finger .
Exhale all the air out first sit nice and tom start with the right thumb .
Close the right nostril start to inhale through the left side .
At the top , you switch close the left nostril open the right exhale .
Same side in hell on the right at the top , you switch close the right side , open the left exhale , same side , inhaled on the left at the top , you switch Excel to the right , same side in here at the top , you switch Excel to the left and how through the left at the top , you switch Excel to the right .
Just keep it going in uh to the right at the top .
You switch Excel , excel to the left .
I think you got the pattern now .
Just keep going on your own repeat .
Keep it going .
Keep breathing through one nostril at a time .
Just keep alternating between the right side and the left side .
Keep breathing .
We're synchronizing the right side and the left side of the body .
It's a very soothing and calming to ground down .
Ideal to get you ready for meditation or if you find yourself in a busy situation in your mind , do this breathing exercise to calm down , relax .
You're not forcing the air in and out through the nose , you're just breathing with your natural rhythm , natural pace and focus fully on the sensation of the air flowing through one nostril at a time .
Just keep going wherever you are .
Continue just for a couple more rounds is such an important part of the practice and of your overall health .
But who is teaching you or who has taught you in your life how to breathe properly ?
At least I didn't learn it in school or no one taught it to me , my parents or anyone as a kid or growing up .
But it's just so important and it's so great that we have the practice of yoga and all these tools to help us breathe better , be healthier and feel better in our body .
Let's finish up the round wherever you are at your round ends and you finish up with an exhale through the left nostril .
That's when you just put both hands on top of your knees , keep your eyes closed , sit nice and tall .
Whenever you exhale through the left nose will finish up .
Now you're breathing again through both nostrils freely through the nose .
Maybe you noticed some improvement and the pace of your breath , the depth of your inhale the quality of your breathing .
And unfortunately , a lot in today's yoga classes , especially in studios , it's all driven .
It's all about movement , but very little if any about and breathing exercises or meditation .
But know that and meditation are , I would even say more important than the movement and the US and us that you do .
Of course , it's a combination of everything together with sleep and diet and your stress level and your lifestyle .
And there are so many things that go into holistic health and movement is very , very important .
Of course , meditation and Panama are just so so powerful and that's where the real magic and often times the biggest breakthroughs and transformations in your life happen .
This is why we share meditation so much in our classes to hopefully encourage you to pick up the practice and integrate those into your daily routine .
Notice the breath coming in and out through the nose , sent the breath down through the nose into your belly .
So that if you're in how the body moves forward and with your exhale , the belly moves more towards the spine , effortless without forcing anything , sit tall and brief , focus on the air coming in and out through the nose or focus on the belly , moving forward and back .
For a lot of us , this is a very challenging practice .
So notice if you already made any judgments about this practice about you sitting here , maybe you told yourself in your head this is very challenging .
This is very hard .
Meditation is not for me , the voice in my head gets so loud .
I can barely endure it and sit here know that this is all completely normal .
If you're new to this practice and you have not trained your mind enough to be still in meditation , then this is probably the most challenging thing you might have done in your whole life .
Sitting with yourself is oftentimes very challenging , but it doesn't have to be in the end .
It's just you sitting with yourself .
We want to make this a beautiful experience that you are excited to spend time with yourself .
Know that you will get there with practice .
It oftentimes takes months to finally be comfortable with that voice in your head .
And really what happens is that the voice has always been there .
But when you sit and you're supposed to breathe , that might be the first time where you actually notice the voice in your head , the chatter , all the stories it's creating and telling you it's always been there , but you might not have realized it through the practice .
You will learn that this voice is not you , you are the one that is aware of the voice to learn , to separate yourself and not identify yourself any longer with .
That voice is already a big breakthrough .
But that will not happen by just knowing this , that will happen through action , through experience .
And that experience , you will create through meditation , through practice every day , daily practice .
And there's ups and downs .
There are good days and , and great days .
But there is never a bad meditation .
The only bad meditation is the one you did not do .
Must say , welcome everyone .
My name is Cassandra and I'm going to be taking you through an hour long beginner yoga class .
So this is a Viasa styled practice which will focus on strength , flexibility and balance .
So even though it's a beginner class , there are going to be some challenges in this practice , but we are going to make them as accessible as possible .
You don't need any props and we are going to begin .
So in any way that is comfortable for your hips and lower back , try to find a nice amount of length through your spine and see if you can lift your shoulders up and roll them all the way back down .
So sliding your shoulder blades down your back , beginning first with this basic posture , you want to feel your lower abdominals hug in and slightly lift up rib cage , tucking down and then lifting the crown of your head up towards the sky and we'll just begin by stretching out through our neck .
Once you realize that , take a step back , notice that this is not you , you are the one observing this voice in your head talking the whole time .
Once you took that step back and you realized that you are the one observing all of this that's happening , take a couple deep breaths , come back to what currently is , what you feel within you and not what you hear .
So you can just drop one ear towards the shoulder .
So I have my left ear dropping towards my left shoulder , keeping the chin roughly parallel to the ground .
See if you can push and press your right shoulder down a little bit more .
So just stretching into the side of your neck , you can close your eyes here , taking a few deep breaths , breathing in and out through your nose .
Try to really relax your jaw and you might reach and crawl out with your right fingertips to intensify the sensation and the pose .
Notice if you've begun slouching or rounding , come back to that proper postural alignment and start to roll your chin down towards your shoulder and roll all the way down chin to chest .
Linger here for a moment or so , really roll your shoulders back and let's lift the chin and the head back up .
We'll just go to the other side , drop your other ear towards your other shoulder , start with the chin , slightly leveled .
So a little bit lifted , you might find that you have more range of motion on one side versus the other .
This is true for any asymmetrical pose in yoga .