Hi , everyone .
Welcome to my channel .
My name is Cassandra and today I'm going to be guiding you through an hour long practice specifically for beginners .
I'm really going to take you through some of what I think are the foundational poses of yoga .
And the only prop that you will need is one block .
If you don't happen to own a block , don't worry about it .
Maybe just grab a cushion or something like that from around the house and that should be good enough .
Let's start lying down on our back and get yourself comfortable and we will keep the knees bent the feet wide and let your knees fall in towards each other .
Palms can rest on the belly or alongside your body softening the shoulder blades down on the floor and connecting to the breath as you inhale and exhale through the nose .
This will be a full body practice and it will be in the style of Vinyasa flow .
But we're going to modify our V to make them a lot easier on the joints and a lot easier if you're still in the process of building strength , allow the ice to close here as we take a few more breaths , you can set your intention for your practice .
So what do you want to focus on or remind yourself of ?
So , let's take a cleansing breath here .
Take a deep inhale through the nose , out the mouth .
Draw the knees in towards the belly .
You can hold on to the back of the thighs or the front of the shins .
I like to rock a little bit side to side here to massage the low back and we'll stretch a little bit into the hip flexor .
Still staying pretty gentle in our practice .
Keep your right knee in towards your belly and extend your left leg to the floor , press into your left heel so that the toes are pointing up and you're trying to pull your right thigh a little bit closer towards your belly .
If the hip flexor are very tight , you might notice that your left foot is hovering off the floor .
So if you find that this is happening , you'll be better off keeping your left knee bent and your foot flat to the ground .
Otherwise that leg is extended , you can sway the right thigh a little bit side to side , creating some movement in the joint .
Notice if the quality of your breath has been altered , give that right thigh one last big squeeze .
And if you did have your left leg straight , we're going to bend the left knee again .
So the foot comes flat to the ground and we'll take a hip opener by crossing the right ankle over the top of your left thigh , flex your right foot and press that knee open and away from you .
If this is enough , stay as you are .
Otherwise , we're going to go a little further by reaching with our hands .
Either hold on to the back of the thigh or the front of the shin as you pull your left thigh in towards the belly .
So you want to be feeling this into your right glute and right hip .
This is a wonderful stretch to do .
If you spend a lot of time sitting at a desk and you can do some ankle rolls with your left foot , flexing and spreading the toes .
Try not to lift the head off the mat .
Stay laying down , give her one fine a little squeeze and set your left foot back down to the floor .
We're going to uncross the leg and bring both feet flat to the mat .
Before we go to the second side .
Let's come into bridge pose .
You want to have your feet hip with distance apart .
And if you reach back with your arms , you almost want to be able to touch your heels with your fingers , soften the arms and then start to press the feet to the ground as curl tail bone up and slowly lift the hips , the low back and the mid back off the ground .
It's really tempting .
Once you're up here to let the knees open wider than the hips and to roll to the outer angles .
I want you to really press into the big toe side of your foot and try to keep your knees hip with distance apart .
Arms are relaxed .
You're using lower body strength , squeeze the glutes a little bit , feeling the belly rise and fall , taking two more full breath cycles in the pose , unwinding slowly inch by inch .
See if you can lower your mid back first , then the lower back and finally the hips , let's pull our left knee in towards us and extend your right leg to the floor .
So stretching a little bit into the hip , flexor and inner groin reach into your right heel , toes are pointing up , drawing the shoulder blades down the back , try to stay present to the sensations happening in your body .
Notice where you feel the stretch the most , that's where you want to imagine your breath going .
Try to squeeze that thigh in a little bit more .
And if you had your right leg straight , we can bend our right knee foot flat on the ground and let's cross that left thigh over the top .
We're sorry , cross the left ankle over the top of your right thigh .
Keep your left foot firmly flexed .
Hold , if you'd like otherwise , you're going to reach through and you're gonna pull your right knee in towards you , holding on to whatever is accessible to you get the stretch into your glute .
Notice if you're leaning on one side more than the other , try to keep your weight evenly distributed and you can do those same little ankle rolls with your right foot .
This time flexing and spreading the toes .
We're just trying to get into the joints a little bit more without overstraining or overworking .
Yoga does not need to be super hard or super complicated in order to be beneficial and give that like one final squeeze and start to release .
We'll come into bridge pose one last time , feet flat to the ground hip with distance apart , soften the arms , press the feet to the ground curl , tailbone up and lift on up .
Just notice if you tend to clench your jaw or tighten it , tighten up into the neck and shoulders , notice how strong the legs are as they support you in this pose , belly rises and falls with the rhythm of your breath one more inhale lift and with as much control as you can slowly roll down inch by inch , no need to rush through this until you're back to the floor step your feet wider than your hips towards the edges of the mat and just let your knees drop from side to side .
It is a great little thing to do to release any tension you might have in your low back after that bridge pose and we're going to roll over to one side so we can use our arms to help us up and take a comfortable seat and a cross legged stance .
Feel free to set yourself up on a block here .
If you feel like you're rolling and falling backwards , you really want to feel elevated and length through the spine as you inhale , let's reach the arms up overhead , brew your palms together to touch and we will move into a twist .
So right hand over your left knee , left fingertips go back behind you as you inhale lengthen up a little more .
And on the exhale , you're going to twist a little deeper by pulling your left shoulder back and opening the chest .
So both hips are still facing forward and you can slowly start to look over that left shoulder too .
Notice if the breath is a little bit more restricted , try to deepen it the next time you exhale release and come all the way back to center , switching sides , inhale , reach up , exhale , twist left hand over your right knee , right hand back , inhale , find some length and then exhale , pull your right shoulder back as you open up the chest a little more .
Maybe start to look towards your right shoulder and breathe out to release .
Let's make our way into our tabletop hose on hands and knees .
You want to have your hands or your palms underneath your shoulders and your knees underneath your hips , spread the fingertips really wide , especially if you have sensitive joints or sensitive wrists .
You want to feel most of your body weight go into the fingertips and knuckles as opposed to right down onto your wrists .
Moving through your cat and cow as you inhale , drop the belly , lift the gaze and curl tail bone up .
Keep the elbow straight as you exhale round and contract chin to chest , soften your neck .
Take a few more of these , go at your own pace .
So you might be going a little slower or a little faster than what I'm doing .
What's important is that you follow your own breath , creating space in between the shoulder blades and into the lower back , warming up the spine completely .
Taking about two more rounds of this inhale , lifting up and exhale , we can tract , let's come all the way back into our neutral table top pose .
We're gonna work on core strength and stability a little more .
Establish a strong foundation , pull the lower belly in , feel your core engage and without dropping the belly down , you're just going to extend your right leg up and back .
Notice how when it does go up , you do tend to want to collapse here .
So firm up the belly flex through your right foot and reach through your heel staying super long .
Can you feel the glutes and hamstrings engaged to lift your heel up a little more ?
Take an inhale here as you exhale , you're going to round the spine and bring your knee maybe to tap in towards your nose a few more times .
So inhale , reach and extend exhale , squeeze and bring it in two more .
Inhale , backing up , exhale , use your core to pull it in last one .
Inhale reach .
So you're going to hold here moving a little bit more challenging into this transition .
I find it easier to tuck the left toes under .
So I have a little bit more stability .
You're going to let your right hip open up as you toes point up towards the sky and you're going to bring your right hand on your hip .
So focus on one thing that is not moving to help you out with balance and see if you can squeeze the glute to lift that right heel up a little higher , take an inhale to lift it and as you exhale , tap the right toes down , let's do that three more times .
So inhale , lift up and exhale to lower and how up , exhale down .
Last one , inhale , lift it up , start to bend your right knee .
We're gonna step that foot forward into a low lunge .
So left hand will stay down on the floor , align your knee over the ankle and feel your right shoulder pull back as you open up into a twist .
Maybe the right arm extends up if that's uncomfortable for your neck or shoulder , keep your hand on your hip , keeping your right arm up , tuck the back toes under and hover the left knee off the floor .
You're trying to align your right shoulder over your left .
Start to look down towards the floor .
Let's bring our right palm on the ground and step it back to your plank pose .
So if you're still in the process of building up strength , don't worry about having your knees off the floor .
We're just going to keep them down on the mat .
Focus instead on reaching your heart forward and drawing the shoulder blades down the back .
Pull the navel in tailbone is reaching down and lower super slowly .
As you bend the elbows , the elbows are hugging in , drop the chin or chest and chin to the floor point the toes back .
So you're pressing into the tops of the feet and we'll take a little baby cobra .
So the like stay glued to the ground .
Exhale , release two more like this inhale , lifting up , pull the shoulders back , exhale , release it down .
Last one .
Inhale up , exhale to lower .
Let's press back to a wide legged child's paws for five breaths .
Big toes together , knees are apart , arms stretch forward , forehead to the ground .
Allow yourself to soften in the shape .
The wider your knees are the deeper the stretch will be next time you inhale .
Let's come up into our table top post , realign yourself .
Palms are underneath the shoulders , knees are underneath the hips , belly is nice and strong .
Let's extend our left leg up and back flex through your left foot So you want your toes to be pointing down , you're reaching through your heel , staying super strong into the belly .
Squeeze the glute , see if you can lift that leg up a little bit higher without collapsing down into the chest .
Keep pressing into the fingertips and knuckles .
Inhale and then exhale .
You're gonna contract , pull your knee in towards your nose and round the upper back .
Three more like this .
Inhale , extend , exhale , squeeze it in reach and contract .
Last one , inhale .
You're gonna hold it here .
We're going to open up our left hip .
So I find it easier to tuck the right toes under for balance until you can bring your left hand on to your waist .
Strong foundation on your right hand .
Can you squeeze the glute and lift the left heel up a little higher .
Take an inhale , exhale , tap the left foot down three more like this .
Inhale up , exhale to lower in her lift , exhale down , inhale , lift up , exhale to lower as you lift up , we're gonna hold it here .
Look forward where it starts to bend that knee and step your foot to the top of the mat for a low lunch trying to get your knee to be over the top of your ankle .
Right hand stays on the floor .
Pull your left shoulder back as you open up into a twist , looking wherever is comfortable for your neck , paying attention to the quality of your breath .
Tuck the back toes under and hover your right knee off the ground , looking down to the floor , release your left palm to the mat .
We step back into our plank pose .
Knees come down on the floor first , find your strong core , lean the chest forward and as you exhale , start to bend into the elbows , chest and shin come down and then lift up to a tiny little cobra press into all 10 toes .
Exhale lower down .
Two more like this .
Inhale , rise and exhale release and he lift up , exhale come down child pose one final time before we start to move into our flows , big toast together , knees apart .
Five breaths here , two more deep belly breaths , pressing the hips towards the heels , melting the heart down and let's lift on it .
So we're gonna take our first downward facing dog .
We've been doing tabletop poses with our hands underneath our shoulders for down dog , you'll probably want to walk your palms a couple inches past your shoulders .
Still keeping them shoulder with distance apart from here , curl the toes under and then press into the feet as you lift your hips up and back .
Now , depending on the flexibility that you have in your hamstrings or if you're working with any injuries , it's usually recommended to keep a little bit of a bend in your knees .
So you're not hyperextending or locking through the joints and because we're still warming up , go ahead and paddle your feet So bending one knee straightening the other leg , doing any little movements that feel good for you here , see if you can keep pushing the palms into the floor as you reach your chest towards your thighs , softening the neck .
So the head can be heavy jaws relaxed , taking a few more breaths in this foundational pose .
Not worrying too much about whether or not the heels are on the floor that comes with time And even if it doesn't , it doesn't really matter , get a little longer through the arms and we're gonna step to walk towards the top of the mat , do this really slowly .
So you feel your core gauge , tiny , tiny little steps as you go all the way forward and once you're there , get your feet wider than your hips .
So more towards the edges of the mat , bend the knees a little and let yourself fold forward in your rag doll stance .
So fingertips can stay towards the floor or rest on a block if the floor is a little bit too far away .
What I like to do here is to just hold on to opposite elbows for a bit more of attraction and you can sway side to side , front to back .
This is less about opening up the hamstrings and more about decompressing the spine and lengthening the spine , shaking out the head .
Yes and no , even here , just notice where you're distributing your weight and your feet if you were holding on to your elbows .
Like what I'm doing here , you can bring your fingertips back down to the floor and we're going to take one of my favorite poses .
This is Mona , your Yogi squat .
So you just need to bring your heels in and point the toes out a little bit at a 45 degree angle or so .
And then you bend the knees to drop the hips down .
Hands can come together at the front of the heart and you're using your elbows to open the knees up a little wider , trying to lift up and tall through the spine .
So your heels may or may not be down on the floor , which is ok .
And you can always sit up on a block if this pose is just not happening today .
It's a little challenging of a pose .
You definitely need some open hips , but it's another , another one of those great poses to do if you sit down for long periods of time .
So even finding length in the neck , three more full breaths , make sure you have a block somewhere close towards the top of the mat , we're going to bring our fingertips back down and straighten your leg .
So you're coming back into that forward fold , but bend your knees generously , we're going to take a stretch into the it band .
So a block is really helpful here .
Bring the palms underneath your or sorry , bring the block underneath your hands and you're going to cross your right foot behind your left and bring your block all the way over towards the left side of your mat , bend into your left knee and press out into that right hip .
You should start to feel a very , very deep stretch all the way down the outer edge of your right leg .
For some of you , it might go all the way down into the foot and try to fold forward here just breathing into the pulse and let's cross that right foot and switch sides .
So cross your left foot behind your right , bring your block all the way over towards the right side of your mat and then bend into your right knee , press into your left hip and fold .
Let's uncross , just set your block off to the side , bend your knees generously and we're going to roll all the way up to stand inch by inch .
Head and shoulders are the last to make their way up , draw the shoulder blades down the back so the palms can shine forward and step to the top of the mat .
If you're not there already , let's bring our big toes together to touch .
Heels are about an inch apart .
Hands at the front of the heart .
Drop down into your chair pose , bend the knees and drop the hips .
Feel the inner thighs squeeze and hug in towards one another and shift the weight back into your heels .
So if you look down .
You kind of want to be able to see the tips of your toes .
So we're not dipping the chest too far forward .
We're staying tall and lifted .
Start to lean your weight onto your left leg so you can pick up your right foot off the ground and step it all the way back into a high lunge .
So you want your feet to be about hip with distance apart or so back , right heel is lifted off the floor .
Left knee is bending generously so you can drop your hips down .
You should feel this nice stretch at the front of your right thigh .
Once you're in the pose and have your balance , you can reach the arms up over head , palms are facing in towards one another .
Fingertips spreading wide , opening up to Warrior two from here .
Keep your left leg exactly as it is just open up the arms and you're going to bring your right foot parallel to the short edge of your mouth .
Left knee is bent , right leg is straight .
Notice if your knee is buckling in , try to keep pressing it out .
So Warrior two is a great way to develop flexibility in your hips .
A very grounding pose .
Let's reverse our warrior .
So right hand down , left arm up , nothing is changing in the legs .
This is just taking a side bend .
You're still bending into your left knee stretching nice and tall , press into the legs come all the way back up and let's straighten our left leg and bring your back foot in just a couple of inches .
So you can narrow your stance a little setting ourselves up for triangle pose , your hips will go back as you slide your left hand down your leg , right arm is up .
Choose if you want to hold on to your shin for more support or you can always use your block and place it underneath your palm as well .
So the goal here is not necessarily to go all the way down to the floor .
Instead feel length through both sides of your rib cage , stacking one shoulder over the other .
Think of spinning your chest up towards the ceiling with the right arm up .
Let's bring that right hand onto our waist .
Start to look down at the floor to help you with balance , bend into your left knee and come all the way back into your warrior too .
So you might need to scoot your back foot a little bit further .
We'll take extended side angle .
Left form goes over your left thigh , right arm reaches up and over .
So you want your bicep to be along your ear , a diagonal line from your right hand all the way to your right foot , bend the left knee even more and press it open .
Although your left arm is helping you out here , don't let it do all the work .
You should be able to float that arm up a little bit and still stay in the pose one more full breath , looking down towards the floor , release both palms down on the ground .
And we're going to step back into our downward facing dog .
Left foot goes back next to the right stretch .
The arms nice and tall , feel free to bend into the knees and let's take our first little flow , but we're really going to modify it .
So , inhale , come forward into plank pose and then feel free to drop your knees to the floor .
As you exhale , bend the elbows , chest and chin come down , point the toes back , lifting up to cobra , inhale , exhale lower down and let's press back strongly through your downward dog from this downward facing dog .
Let's walk the feet up towards the top of the mat .
Take as many little tiny steps as you need , widen your feet towards the edges of the mat and hold on to the opposite elbows .
As you fold , you can sway a little bit side to side .
Let's bring our fingertips back down to the ground .
Heels and toes out .
Come into your Yogi squat .
Knees , bend hands with the heart , use the elbows to press the knees open a little wider .
Always trying to lengthen a little more in the shape .
One more inhale through the nose and exhale , fold forward and release .
Keep your knees bent and roll all the way up to sand , inch by inch , press the feet to the ground as you come all the way back up and then standing at the front of the mat , you'll bring your big toes together , heels , apart hands at the front of the chest into your chair pose , bend the knees , drop the hips , send the weight back into the heels , lift and spread all 10 toes .
So you're really engaging the arches of the feet , try to sink down a little deeper into the pose .
If you can feel the quads and the glutes and gauge and strengthen , developing stability and a strong foundation , you're going to lean onto your right leg .
Scoop that left foot up and carefully step it all the way back into your high lunge .
Feet are about hip with distance apart .
Right knee is bending generously , left heel is off the ground .
Once you have your strong steady foundation , the arms will extend up .
We want to be careful not to pop the chest forward here , keep the rib cage hugging in .
So you're not over exaggerating the curve in your spine , bend the right knee a little deeper and we will open up to our warrior too .
So arms out left foot parallel to the short edge of your mat .
Right knee is bending generously and you're trying to press your right knee open , stacking the shoulders over the hips .
Let's reverse left hand down right arm up .
Nothing changes in the foundation of the legs looking wherever is comfortable for your neck , press into the legs to come back and let's straighten our right leg , bring your back foot in just a little bit .
We'll take triangle on the other side .
Hips go back , sliding that right hand down your leg .
Left arm reaches up , either hold on to your shin or use your block underneath your palm for more support .
So what tends to happen here is that we lean our hips back and our chest forward .
I want you to feel your left shoulder drawing back , staying in one long line , you should feel a nice side stretch into the left side of your waist .
Then down that leg expanding and opening up through the arms .
Start to bring your left hand back on your hip and look down , bending into your right knee .
We're coming back into our warrior too for extended side angle .
So right form over your right thigh , left arm up and over , pull your left shoulder back just like triangle , think of spinning your chest up towards the sky , keeping the hips grounded and low .
So working with those two opposing forces of grounding and elevating , looking down to the floor , let's set both palms on the ground .
We're gonna step it back into our downward facing dog in order to take our little as you inhale , come forward to plank .
So it's up to you .
If your knees come down or if you prefer to keep them lifted , exhale , lower down , make sure the elbows are hugging in towards the sides of the waist , pointing the toes back , press into the feet , lift up cobra maybe go a little higher hip , stay grounded on the floor .
Exhale reliefs and let's press back downward facing dog .
So we should still have our block somewhere close towards the top of the mat .
From this downward dog .
Let's extend our right leg up towards the sky .
Keep it straight and squared , Press into that heel and then pull your knee in towards your nose .
As you step your right foot all the way through to the top of the mat .
You'll want to spin your back heel down at about a 45 degree angle .
So this is warrior .
One arms reach up , right knee is bending generously trying to get your thigh parallel towards the ground .
It probably won't be parallel , but that's just the intention that we want to have in the pose your left hip is going to want to open up as if we were doing Warrior two .
Instead keep squeezing your left hip and left shoulder forward .
So everything is facing towards the front of your mat .
Take a few more deep breaths and the strong foundational pose always pressing into that back , left heel and lifting out of the lower back with the arms up .
We're just gonna press our hands together and start to draw your palms towards the center of your chest .
Let's straighten our right leg and bring your back foot in a couple of inches , just like we did for triangle pose , you should still have your block somewhere close forward .
Now , bring your hands on your hips because I want you to feel your left hip scoop forward and your right hip pull back as if you were shining two lights .
You want to always keep them shining forward , never opening up towards the sides , pressing into the feet as you inhale , lift and lengthen and on the exhale , start to hinge forward at the waist .
So even if you don't have really flexible hamstrings already , you might need to bend into your right knee again , which is fine .
What's more important is that your left hip doesn't start to open up towards the side .
So keep those imaginary lights shining forward .
And once you have your flat back , you can rest your palms either down towards the floor or feel free to grab a hold of your block as you soften the upper back , the chest , the shoulders , the neck , the head .
So keeping the hips squared makes the pose a lot more intense , which is why we tend to not do it unless we consciously really think about it and focus on it .
So always ask yourself , can you pull your right hip back and left hip forward a little bit more , two more breaths .
Now , if you're folding down pretty low , like I am here , you need to first come up into your flat back , press the feet into the ground , hands at the heart and come all the way up the stand .
We're going to come from pyramid poses into Warrior three .
So start to lean the weight onto your right leg .
Keep that left hip spinning down and you're going to stand on that right leg slowly lifting the left off the ground .
So most of you are parallel to the ground , you're really not dipping your chest too low here .
If hands at the heart doesn't really work for you , feel free to take any other arm variation that helps you balance .
Left hip is dropping so that the knee and the toes are pointing down towards the floor .
And if you fall out of this pose , try not to be too hard on yourself .
We're going to come all the way up to stand on our right leg , pull your left knee in towards your belly , using hip flexor strength coming into tree poles , set your left foot to the inside of that right leg .
It could be towards the upper thigh or down towards the shin .
You want to feel your left knee press open as you squeeze and engage the glutes and then press everything in towards the mid line as you lift up and maybe the arms can extend up too .
Notice if you're digging your toes into the floor , try to stay a little lighter there .
Take one more breath to lift and to lengthen hands , come back to the center of the heart into your mountain pose .
Just release the left foot next to the right .
Shake it out .
Let's take a little to go into the other side .
Inhale , extend the arms up overhead , exhale , fold all the way down , soften the knees to protect your low back .
Halfway lift , inhale , breathe and deeply exhale palms come down to the floor and just step the feed back into your plank poses , knees can be on or off the floor .
We lower to our belly inhale .
We lift up the cobra , pull the shoulders back , exhale , set it down and press it back to your downward facing dock .
Moving into the second side .
Please reach your left leg up towards the sky .
Keep it straight and squared , soften your neck .
Pull your knee in towards your belly , very lightly .
Step that foot forward in between the palms , we're gonna spin our back heel down .
So 45 degree angle with your right foot , left knee is bending , press into the leg so you can come up for warrior one bend the left knee as much as you can here trying to pull your left hip back , right hip forward , reaching up tall through the fingertips , maybe even looking up a little bit .
Let's bring the hands at the heart straighten your left leg and bring your back foot in a couple of inches .
We're going to place our hands on our hips .
So this time , feel your right hip scoop forward , always shining towards the front of your map .
Inhale lengthen and then move in with your flat back .
So lean the heart forward , keep scooping that right hip .
And once you're parallel to the ground , you can decide if you grab a hold of a block or if the fingertips come down towards the floor as you fold , left knee can definitely bend .
Otherwise , it will be too much of a strain on your lower back and too much of a strain on your hamstrings , engage your belly as you start to lift the head and the chest up a little higher , press into the feet .
Hands of the heart come all the way up .
Moving into our warrior three pose , start to lean on to your left leg and you're going to reach your right leg up and back , keep spinning your right side down .
So the knee , the toes point down , take any arm variation you want to .
So what's important for balance is that we focus on one thing that is not moving , feel the quads and the kneecap lift up as you engage that left leg coming all the way up to stand , pull your right knee in with you and we're going to come into our tree pose on the other side .
So right foot comes to the inside of your left leg , either to the inner thigh or down towards the shin .
Press your right knee open and lift up , arms can reach up once you have your foundation in the pose and you found your balance .
So as much as your right foot is pressing in towards that left leg , you want to feel the left leg press back .
So there's a very dynamic and strong action of hugging in towards the midline .
Lift up a little taller and then hands come down to the heart , releasing into mountain poles , big toes together , heals apart .
Let's move through our flow .
Inhale , reach exhale , fall down soft , bend in the knees halfway left flat back , exhale .
Let's plant the palms , step the feet back .
Inhale here , exhale , lower down , point the toes back .
So you can lift up to cobra exhale release and let's come into our puppy pose stretch .
So just come to your table top stands .
This is almost like doing down dog , but we're keeping our knees down on the floor .
Make sure your hips stay stacked over the tops of your knees , pull the lower belly in and all you're going to do is walk your palms forward until the forehead can come down closer towards the mat .
You should feel this as a stretch in the shoulders and armpits .
Slowing down the breath .
Let's bend the elbows a little bit , slide all the way down to your belly coming into Sphinx poses , keep your forms flat to the ground .
Palms and elbows are about shoulder with distance apart .
So you feel the chin and the chest lift up .
So you control how deeply you go into this back , bend , the closer your elbows are towards you , the deeper this will be .
So if it's too much , just walk your palms further forward .
So there's not too much of a strain on your lower back .
You can always widen your feet too to make this a little bit easier on the low back .
Just make sure you're not popping your shoulders forward .
Keep pulling them back behind you .
Lifting up nice and tall through the chest .
Hips stay grounded on the floor .
Breathe deeply , release all the way back down .
Coming into locust pose .
This is my favorite way to build strength in the back body .
So really great for the spine , you're going to interlace your fingers behind you and reach your knuckles as far back as you can .
So I'm looking up just because I need you guys to hear me .
But really , you're going to keep looking down towards the floor .
So the back of the neck is long as you inhale , lift the chest and the head off the ground .
See if you can lift your knuckles off of the low back and reach the knuckles towards the heels .
If this feels pretty good , go ahead and lift your legs too .
If you find it difficult to breathe in this pose , you know , you've gone a little bit too high up and maybe just keep your legs and your feet down on the floor , spread the toes , take two more full breaths in and out through the nose and we release , coming all the way back down .
Let's bring our hands back underneath the chest .
We're going to come to an easy child's pose .
So knees will stay close together , hips to the heels , reach your arms back and let your forehead come down to the floor .
Just a great way to release anything that might be feeling tender in the low back .
We're rolling all the way back up .
So we'll take one final back bend .
This is camel pose .
You want to tuck the back toes under .
You don't have to do this .
I find it easier for stability purposes to have them tucked under .
But if you want , your feet can be flat to the ground , you just want to make sure that you're up on your shins and your knees are hip with distance apart so that you're in one long line .
Now , feel the tailbone lengthen down as you pull the lower belly in , you're not overcompensating this curve , but you just want to maintain the natural curve in your lower back .
We're going to bring our hands back behind us .
So the fingertips point down and then squeeze your shoulder blades behind you so that you feel a little bit of a lift in the chest as you inhale , think of lifting the collar bones up high and then maybe moving into a back bend .
So we're not trying to dump all of the weight into the lower back .
We're really trying to open up into the chest collarbones and upper back .
So just go to your limit .
You really don't need to go very far in this post coming all the way back up and let's set the hips back down to the heels , swing your legs forward .
We'll take a little twist , which is a great way to release after that pose with your legs out in front of you .
Let's bring our right knee bent and you're going to cross your right foot over the top of your left thigh .
Really ground down through all four corners of that foot .
Right fingertips go behind you as you inhale , reach your left arm up and then exhale , hook your left elbow to the inner thigh , crease , start to pull your right shoulder back , open up the chest , maybe even looking over that right shoulder .
We're trying not to contract or round .
Let's release and let go before we go to the second side , just bring your right foot to the inside of your left thigh .
So you're still sitting up nice and tall , still facing forward towards the top of the mat .
We'll take a little bit of a fold deeper into the hamstrings , inhale , arms up , exhale hinge at the waist , fold forward , catch a hold of whatever is accessible , feel free to bend your left knee if you need to soften the shoulders , the neck , the jaw , let's roll and make our way back up , inch by inch .
Straightening the right leg .
Let's bend the left knee and you'll have to cross your left foot over the top of your right thigh .
Bring your left fingertips back behind you as you inhale , reach your right arm up , exhale , hook the right elbow to the inner left thigh , crease , pull your left shoulder back , twist , let's unwind .
Taking your forward , fold , left foot to the inside of your right side .
Sit up nice and tall inhale , reach the arms up , exhale , fold it down , unwind , lift back up and let's lower all the way down to our backs , bring your block with you .
So we'll finish with one of my favorite poses .
This is a variation of legs up the wall .
As if you were in bridge pose , you're just gonna lift your hips and put the block underneath you at its lowest level .
If you don't own a block , remember , you can just do this with some cushions or pillows .
You want to be elevated a little bit , six inches , maybe a little bit more .
And then you're just gonna lift your legs all the way up .
So this is a very gentle inversion , soften the arms .
You want to let the legs get weightless and the upper body get grounded .
And as we start to close our practice , you want to start slowing down the breath , maybe closing the eyes , knees can have a soft bend .
So if this pose is restorative enough to serve as Shana for you , you're welcome to hold it for the next few minutes .
If you want to take your traditional Shana , you can bend the knees , bring the feet back to the floor and just move the block out to the side , straighten out the legs , feel the shoulders shrug down and away from the ears , come back to whatever breath is natural to you observing how you feel .
Now , as opposed to when you first stepped on to your match and honoring the work that you did .
I encourage you to stay here for a few more minutes .
As long as you want to thank you all so very much for doing this practice with me .
I hope you enjoyed it .
Please do subscribe to my channel and give the video a thumbs up .
It helps me a lot or you might want to share it with your friends who's looking to get into yoga .
This is a great introductory class .
Thank you again and I must stay .