Must welcome everyone .
My name is Cassandra and I'm gonna take you through a wonderful evening yoga sequence to help you stretch and relax .
So if you have tired and achy muscles , by the end of the day , this will help you unwind so that you can ease into a great night's sleep .
Get as comfortable as you can .
This is wonderful to do right before bed as well and there are no props required .
So we're going to start lying down on our backs .
I'm going to begin in reclined butterfly pose .
So with a hip opener , bringing the soles of your feet together to touch and letting your knees fall open .
If this is too much .
For any reason , you can always just start in with your arms and your legs up to the sides .
So just choosing whatever feels the best for your body today , either with or without the hip opener and try to shrug your shoulders down and away from your ears and your arms can stay alongside your body or you can even reach them up overhead .
If you like , we'll give ourselves a few moments here to settle in the pose .
Try to relax your facial muscles .
Notice where you hold 10 , maybe asking yourself what it is that you'd like to release from your day and start to take some really deep belly breaths .
So that every time you inhale , you feel your belly button lift up towards the ceiling and as you exhale , you can feel your belly button drop down towards the floor , take three more slow steady breaths like this maybe counting up to five as you inhale and finding that same count of five as you exhale .
If you were in a reclined butterfly pose like me , it might feel good just just straighten your legs and we can all reach our arms up over head , big extension here from your fingers down to your toes .
And let's all bring our knees in towards the belly , just doing some knee circles here making this an intuitive movement just a way to release our low back and you can switch sides back and forth and bring your arms back out to the sides like a little cactus shape and we'll take an easy twist .
So with your feet flat on the floor , you can move your hips a little bit over to the right before letting both knees and thighs drop down to the left .
Try to encourage your right shoulder blade to ground into the floor .
Collarbones facing up .
We're trying to stack our right hip over our left one as a way to gently release our right hip as well as our low back and inhale lift all the way back to center and we'll just switch sides so your hips can go to the left , both knees and thighs drop over to the right .
And this time try to keep your left shoulder blade grounded collarbones facing up .
And even in this twist throughout our practice together , see if you can keep that slow , steady breath that travels all the way down to your belly .
Belly breathing is a great way to alleviate stress and anxiety .
So important to do at the end of a long day and just let yourself roll over onto your right shoulder and right arm , push into the floor so that you can lift all the way back up and we'll come into a diamond shape with our legs .
So instead of being really close in that butterfly with our heels , close towards the hips , go ahead and bring them out a little bit more so that your knees are bent even a little bit more than a 90 degree angle .
This is just to invite the muscles along the spine to relax , starting to open up the outer hip a little bit more inviting our mind , our heart and our body to let go to soften and to relax and let's start to curl and lift back up .
You can walk your hands in inch by inch and we'll come onto all fours and our table top poses palms under your shoulders , knees underneath your hips , just moving through cat and cow .
So getting a little bit more movement through our spine as you inhale , drop your belly , lift your gaze up , exhale .
Reverse this as you round and contract and you might notice that there's one part of the spine that feels a little bit more stiff .
Try to breathe into that space , pushing into your fingertips and knuckles try to be lighter on your wrists .
Last one year exhale and one more spinal movement here will come into thread the needle .
So adding a rotation , reach your right arm up to the sky and then thread it through right shoulder and ear lowering down to the floor .
And I like to stretch my left arm up overhead , pushing a little bit into the fingertips .
Notice if your hips are shifting over to the left , try to realign them over your knees , slide your left hand back towards your face , push into the palm , come all the way back out and we'll go to the other side .
Left arm rises and thread it through , gently placing your shoulder and your head on the floor and you might extend the right arm up overhead , pushing into the palm , pushing into your fingertips , try to roll your right shoulder down and away from your ear .
And this time try to prevent your hips from moving over to the right side of your mat , finding a rotation and a stretch through a mid back and upper back , slide , the right hand back and let's press to come all the way back out .
And we'll find downward facing dog from here .
Walk your hands a little bit past your shoulders , tuck your toes under and lift your hips up and back downward facing dog .
A mush and you might paddle your feet a little bit here , bending one knee straightening the other one .
Notice where in your calves or your ankles , you might be holding onto some tension , maybe even your toes , think of pressing and reaching your chest towards your thighs .
And let's find rag doll pose at the top of the mat to walk your feet forward , keep them fairly wide away from one another and you can bend your knees a lot here .
This is a full release of a pose trying to create space between every single vertebrae with a light traction .
So let your head be really heavy , not contracting in your neck whatsoever .
You can hold on to the elbows , sometimes sway a little bit , can feel good or you can remain still stretching through the backs of our legs and let's take a cleansing breath in this pose .
So , rather than breathing in and out through our nose , we're gonna inhale through the nose and exhale out the mouth with a sigh and we'll do that a few times , breathe in letting go twice more .
One more beautiful fingers on the floor , bend your knees , you're gonna keep your right foot forward and just step your left foot back in your runner's lunge .
You can come up onto your fingertips here , back of the knee stays lifted and just walk back and forth a little bit here rocking the weights stretching into our hip , flexor keeping some length through our spine .
And as you push into your right leg straighten it any amount .
So it does not need to be perfectly straight .
See if you can fold in , keep pushing into your back heel , bend into your front knee again this time , let your back then come down to the floor and you might just stay here in your low lunge on jana , or you might add a quad stretch by bending into that left knee , reaching back with your right hand and drawing that heel in towards you .
See if you can keep your right foot firmly flat on the floor .
Notice your breath in this pose carefully , release the hold of your back foot , tuck your toes under .
And we're gonna make our way to our three legged dog from here .
So right leg is going to reach all the way up to the sky , bend your right knee and open up your hip and see if you can almost touch your right heel to your glute so that you're getting a little bit of a quad stretch and straighten that leg downward facing dog from our downward dog .
Let's walk the feet forward into our rag doll fold once more .
Holding onto the elbows and we'll find those three releasing breaths again .
So , in , through the nose and then exhale out the mouth .
Ah , runners lunch on the second side , keep your left foot forward , step the right toes back .
So your feet should be about hip with distance apart or so and you can move a little bit rocking your weight forward and back .
Uh So we're trying not to leave anything out and you can straighten your left leg any amount .
This is a wider variation of our pyramid pose , maybe folding in pressing back through your right heel , bend into your front knee on your low lunge .
So the back knee comes down to the floor and you might just stay here where you can always add on by reaching for your back heel or pulling it in release tension from your shoulders , from your jaw , from your neck .
And let's release this 13 like a dog , left leg all the way up , binge your left knee , open up your hip and you're trying to lift your knee up as high as it can go while squeezing so that your left heel is almost touching your glute three like a dog and downward facing dog .
Let's find a wide , like a child's pose from here .
Bring your knees to the floor and widen your knees as much as you would like big toes together .
We're gonna fold all the way down .
Try to slow down your breath .
Find some grounding in this pose .
Notice if you're holding your stomach in any way .
Normally we want core engagement throughout most of our yoga practice .
But here specifically , especially for a bedtime class , just give yourself permission to relax completely .
Take three other deep breaths right here in the pose .
And you can start to walk your hands in as you lift and we're just gonna sit on our heels .
So I personally carry a lot of tension in my feet .
So to add a little bit more of a stretch , I like to tuck my toes under and sit on my heels in this way .
If it's too much , just keep your toes pointed back , reach your arms out in front of you bend to the 90 degree angle or right arm under the left binding once or twice , shrug your shoulders down and away from your ears , keep your elbows up and move your hands away from you as you push your forms together , you might start to tuck your chin towards your chest , getting a big stretch between the shoulder blades and inhale , open up to release and we'll go to the other side , left arm under the right to binding once or twice and you can tuck the chin to the chest as you push your forms together .
Open up your arms and go ahead and release the tuck of your toes .
If that's what you had been doing and we'll come into deer pose next .
This is something I've been doing every night before bed feels really good .
So dear pose , we're focusing mostly on the back leg .
So , whatever your right leg is doing doesn't matter quite that much .
It's almost like you're trying to do 2 90 degree angles .
So with my left leg , I'm trying to align my knee with my hip and then my shin is parallel to the longer edge of the mat .
And from here , you can just start to walk your hands back behind you .
As you press and rotate that left hip down , you'll start to feel a pretty deep stretch of the inner groin and through your inner thigh and often staying up is enough , you might be able to come down maybe on your forms , maybe laying all the way down .
We're not here forever just about five breaths or so .
So find the alignment and the depth of the pose that feels the best for your hips .
Totally normal to feel this in the quads as well and go ahead and wash your hands lifting up and we'll go and switch sides .
Give yourself a moment just to straighten your legs out in front of you and other sides .
So this time you're trying to align your right knee with your right hip and your right chin is parallel to the longer edge of the mat , just bring your left leg wherever it's the most comfortable .
1270.199 --> 1353.79
So don't worry about a straight spine .
Instead , we want to let ourselves relax .
And so for me , my na my hips naturally rotate out a lot , which means that when I go into a forward fold , my feet want to flop out to the sides .
It's not a big deal if this happens .
But if this happens to you as well , and you want to work on keeping your feet , your toes pointing up .
I like to just plug my thumbs underneath my shins and underneath my ankles and it just helps my feet stay with a slight internal rotation and you can absolutely bend into your knees a little here .
I'm sure I've said this before , but this really is one of the most therapeutic poses we can do at the end of the day .
A great way to ground to let go .
You need to really calm the energy in the body .
Take three more breaths here in the pose .
See if you can relax a little bit more every time you exhale and you can start to walk your hands in .
Really go slow with this .
Try not to rush out of the po and we'll make our way down onto our backs , bending into your knees .
And just like at the beginning of class , you might take those same knee circles .
So using your hands to move your knees around like you're stirring a pot and just notice what has changed .
This motion might feel different .
Now , the second time around and reverse the other way and we'll come into a laying spinal twist again .
But with the option to twist a little bit deeper if you'd like , so you can reach your arms out into that cactus shaped feet on the floor .
And I like to wrap my right leg over the left one , then shift your hips over to the right and let both knees drop over to the left .
If this variation of the twist is too much , just take the same one we did at the beginning of class with one leg stacked over the other .
1541.119 --> 1655.589
So last pose here before we go into Shabana , you either just pull your knees wide into your chest or you can take your happy baby stretch , holding onto the feet , stacking your ankles over your knees , maybe rocking a little bit side to side .
You know , whenever you're ready , make your way to Shawana , take up some space with your arms , your legs , palms , facing up to the sky .
Try to find some stillness here in the pose , relaxing your eyes , your jaw all the way down into your belly , your fingers and your toes .
So what are you releasing ?
What do you need to let go of ?
How can you relax to prepare for a great night's rest ?
Start to breathe a little bit deeper , gently awakening and moving in any way that feels intuitive to you , maybe stretching your arms up overhead like we did at the beginning of class and we will roll over onto one side .
I'm lifting up into a comfortable seat and set up tall .
Let's bring our hands together at the front of the heart on Mudra .
We'll close this practice with the chant of own one time we inhaled a champ .
Big breath in .
I must stay .
Thank you so much Yogis for doing this evening .
Yoga stretch with me .
I hope you feel rested and a lot more comfortable in your body .
Please do leave me a comment to let me know how this went for you and do subscribe to my channel .
If you don't already , I put out many yoga classes every single week .
Thank you again .
Must stay .