We previously shared some of the best yoga poses for falling asleep. Now, let’s take a look at the best poses to do to start your day.
Yoga is beneficial at time of day, but practicing in morning may be best. The reason is that yoga doubles as a morning work out and a mindful activity that gets your blood pumping and centers yourself for the day ahead. Certain yoga traditions actually emphasize morning practice, such as Ashtanga yoga, and committing to a morning practice may also help you to integrate a daily flow into your day without taking time away from your busy lifestyle. You don’t have to commit to a full hour-long flow, either. Doing a few quick poses can clear your head and connect your mind and body. Here are a few of the best yoga poses to do in the morning if you’d like to start your day with a short and sweet flow.
Cat cow is really two poses in one.
For cat pose: Begin on your mat on your hands and knees in tabletop position. Your wrists should be aligned under your shoulders, and your knees should be under your hips. You back should be flat. Begin by taking a deep breath inward. As you exhale, begin to round your spine in an upward motion. Move with your breath. Pull your belly button up towards your spine, and tuck your chin to your chest while relaxing your neck.
For cow pose: Next, take another breath inward. As you do this, begin to arch your back and bring the crown of your head upward. Lift your tailbone towards the sky.
Begin in the tabletop position with your palms and knees on the ground. Align your wrists under your shoulders and your knees under your hips. Spread your fingers wide. Exhale deeply as you tuck your toes underneath you and lift your knees off your mat, drawing your pelvis up towards the ceiling. Then begin to straighten your legs and lower your heels to the floor. Your body should be in the shape of an “A” the way a dog looks when they stretch out. As a beginner, you likely won’t be able to straighten your legs completely, so feel free to keep them bent as much as feels comfortable to you. Just be sure to keep your form while holding the pose for at least 5-10 breaths.
Begin lying face down on your mat. Press the tops of your feet into your mat. Be sure not to tuck your toes in. Place your palms at your side and press into your mat hugging your elbows close to your side. As you inhale, straighten your arms while lifting your torso off the mat. Draw your shoulders back while reaching your heart forward, and hold for 5-10 breaths.