We've been having some really high temps here, so I've been doing my practice first thing in the morning before my apartment gets too hot. I like these poses strung together because they're a nice combination to both strengthen muscles and release tension. Lemme break it down for you:
1. Warrior 2 - This targets the legs and arms, if you can believe it. And if you can't believe it, well, just hold the pose for a while and your arms are guaranteed to start shaking. The key here is to make the arms very strong, and sit low in the front leg. Just watch out for these common mistakes so you don't hurt your knee.
2. High lunge - This is one of my favorite poses because it feels so good for the extended leg hip flexor. It's one of those poses where I get into it and with each exhale I swear I can actually feel the tension go away and the length coming in. Just watch that front knee and make sure it stays directly over or slightly behind the ankle.
3. Chair pose variation - This is a really challenging pose and great for strengthening the quads. Just watch that the low back stays long (i.e. avoid arching the back), and sit low but try not to collapse in the hip joints. Instead, use your core strength to stay light and lifted. If you want more of a challenge, try it with a twist.
4. Standing pigeon - This is my go-to pose when I'm feeling stiff from sitting all day because it releases tension in the hips. The closer the torso comes towards the legs, the more you'll feel it in the hip. If you want to get crazy and add an arm balance, standing pigeon leads directly into baby flying pigeon pose.
5. Side plank variation - This works the obliques, the arms and the legs, so it's a total body pose. If it's a little intense, modify by either bringing the bottom knee down, or stack the feet with the legs extended in regular side plank pose.
Let's talk What are your feel good poses? Is there a certain time of day you prefer to do those poses? Are there any poses you completely avoid? Why?