Whether you’re a morning person or struggle to get out of bed, finding the time for a simple 10-minute yoga practice will bring you into alignment and set you up for your day in the best possible way. Virgin Active Bligh Street’s Yoga Head Coach Kate has the best no-fuss sequence ready for you to work into your morning routine: you can flow it a little more when it’s colder outside or slow it down for a deeper stretch. You’re the creator!
Stand with feet hip-width apart, toes pointing directly forward. Hands to heart in Anjali mudra. Take a few slower, fuller and intentional breaths. Visualise pulling the inhale all the way up from the souls of your feet into the crown of your head. As you exhale, the breath travels through every inch of your body all the way out into your fingertips and the edges of your skin. Let this bring you into a sense of radiant aliveness.
As you exhale, fold forward to the ground. Make a little more space into the backs of the legs by bending the knees slightly. Soften belly to thighs and grip the fingers around the elbows to hang heavy through the forearms. Let the crown of your head drop and breathe deep for 5 – 10 breaths. Guide the breath up and down the backs of your legs, opening your legs for the journey of the day.
To create your chair, bend knees and sweep fingertips to the sky. Upper arms lengthen upwards beside the ears and the crown of the head peaks upwards. Now lengthen the tailbone downwards, so it’s reaching for the space between your heels. Sink a little deeper into the knees and sit lower. Begin to pump the breath in and out of the belly here with short, sharp ins and outs. Aim for 30 of these pumping breaths and then release back into uttanasana.
Ground both hands and walk the feet towards the back of the mat. Keep hands shoulder width apart and feet hip-width apart. Spread toes and fingers wide and keep the index fingers pointing directly forward. Let the head drop and give it a shake, distilling and dissolving any thoughts you don’t need right now. Elongate the spine by drawing the tail bone more toward the sky. Press the thigh bones, belly and chest into space behind you. You can choose to hold the pose in stillness or begin to pedal the feet and rock the hips from side to side. Stay and breath for between 10 and 15 breaths.
Once you’ve begun to quiver in your dog, you know you’re strong! Drop knees to earth and lower the tailbone to heels for child’s pose. Knees can be wide or together. Arms can rest by the side of the body or be stretched out in front of you. Let the forehead rest to the earth and begin to soften everything downward, allowing the energy of your practice to settle and converge. Take your time here to bring your breaths into a count of equal breath by breathing in and out for a count of 4.
When you’re ready, make an intention to greet the day with all that you are and take the truth of your practice from within you out into the world around you!
This article was written by Yoga Head Coach Kate Pippos