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3 Yoga Poses to End Your Day

I've almost completed my Yoga Teacher Training, so I thought I'd share my first yoga-related post. After work, I sometimes like to end my day with a short yoga practice - 10-20 minutes, and usually yin yoga. Yin is best practiced first thing in the morning or later at night, when the muscles are cool. Especially if I've been sitting for a few hours, it can feel grounding and bring back awareness to my body. For those of you not familiar with yin yoga, the poses are usually held a bit longer, often 3-5 minutes each. It can feel quite intense if you haven't practiced before, and so usually props (blocks, bolsters, etc.) to help get into the poses and stay there for long periods is often helpful. Here are my 3 favourite after work/evening yoga poses (with modification options).

1. Child's pose - knees spread as wide apart as comfortable, hips resting on the feet, and reaching forward with the arms as you fold down. It offers a moment of contemplation, is grounding (because you're literally on the ground) and allows you to connect with your breath and body, while quieting your mind. Modification: if your head can't get to the floor, rest it on a block.

2. Happy Baby - lying on your back, feet overhead and flat, with your knees bent. Grab onto your big toes with your peace fingers, or the sides of your feet. Try to keep your back flat. This offers a gentle hip opening, while staying grounded, and giving you the chance to melt into the pose. Modification: You can spread your knees apart, without raising your feet and rock from side-to-side, or you can take Full Wind Pose, with your knees drawn into your chest, again with the option to rock from side-to-side.

3. Savasana - lying on your back, feet spread apart, palms facing up and taking up as much room as you'd like. This is the final pose of most yoga sequences and allows us to integrate the practice into our bodies, gives us a final opportunity to still the mind and focus on the breath. Modification: you can practice lying on your belly, or by place a prop (like a bolster) under your knees.

I'd love to hear your thoughts on this minute sequence, especially if you are able to hold the postures for 5 minutes each (come out sooner if you can't). Notice what it's like to end your day this way.


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