Yoga Tip: Chair Yoga |pt 2|

Today we have a continuation of last week's Yoga Tip: Chair Yoga |pt 1|. These can be done right in your office chair at work or at the kitchen table at home. 

Seated Piriformis Stretch

This is a great stretch for the glutes and the lower back. 

Step 1: Sit towards the edge of your seat. Look down and make sure your left ankle is in line with your left knee. Tilt your pelvis slightly forward to lengthen from the tailbone all the way through the head. Inhale and bring the right ankle to rest on the left thigh. Exhale the hands to anjali mudra, prayer position. Inhale and lean forward about 45 degrees, being sure to maintain the length in the spine. Breathe here for three to five breaths, and go out of the posture as gracefully as you went in. Repeat on the other side. 

Upward Dog |on a chair|

Step 1: It's urdhva mukha svanasana, for all you Sanskrit learners out there, but upward facing dog is how we'll refer to it here. Start on your hands and knees in front of the chair. Be sure your knees are in line with your hips, legs hip distance apart. Place your hands on the chair shoulder width apart.

Step 2: Inhale and pull yourself up, lifting your knees off the ground and rolling onto the tops of the feet. Be sure your wrists, elbows and shoulders are in one long line. Exhale and look up, feeling one long line of energy from the tips of the toes all the way up through the crown of the head. Be mindful of the shoulders- bring them away from the ears. Engage the arms and the legs. Breathe here for three to five breaths. 

Hamstring/Back/Shoulder Stretch

A triple threat stretch, my friends! Great for waking up the entire body after being seated for a long time. 

Step 1: Start by standing behind the chair, hands on the back of the chair, shoulder distance apart. Walk yourself back until your body is at a 90 degree angle and ankles, knees and hips are in one line, feet are hip distance apart. Inhale to find length up the back legs, exhale to find length from the coccyx through the top of the head. Feel the back very light and weightless (ie try not to let your back become the letter U). Inhale and bring the shoulders away from the ears, feeling the shoulder blades lengthen down the sides of the back and exhale, feeling length from the base of the shoulder blades all the way through the tips of the fingers which are spread and energized. Take a few more breaths here and come out as gracefully as you went in.

Hope you enjoyed!