Forward to Friday

holiday-hustle-challengeWelcome to Day 2 of the Holiday Hustle!  Today we’re only doing one move.  It’s yoga but don’t freak out.

Standing Forward Bend

It’s a surprisingly simple move with great benefits; spinal decompression, balance and improves flexibility and more.

First let’s get you into the proper standing pose

  • Stand with your feet hip distance apart, knees soft with your weight evenly distributed
  • Feel all 4 corners of your feet firmly on the ground (ball of pinkie toe, ball of big toe, inside heel and outside heel)
  • Let your hand rest at your side
  • Loop your shoulders back and down, opening your chest slightly
  • Keep your neck long and tall
  • Breathe in and bring your hands from your side above your head, palms facing each other
  • Keeping your shoulders down (not up by your ears) extend your arms up towards the ceiling or sky
  • Exhale and bring your hands back down to your side
  • Repeat bringing your arms overhead on the inhale
  • On an exhale, bend forward and pressing your hip crease back
  • Keep your knees soft and reach your hands down towards the ground your feet as you bend
  • Let your head hang relaxed
  • Arms can hang or you can grab onto opposite elbows with your hand (rag doll)
  • Feel free to bend and straighten your legs in this position
  • Hold the pose for 10 to 20 seconds (or longer depending on how you feel)
Beginner’s Tip
  1. To increase the stretch in the backs of your legs, bend your knees slightly.
  2. Be careful not to straighten the knees by locking them back (you can press your hands against the back of each knee to provide some resistance); instead let them straighten as the two ends of each leg move farther apart.
  • On an inhale and with a big, wide swing of your arms out to your side  come back up to standing with your hands above your head (take up a log of space with your arms)
  • Release your hands back to your side with an exhale
  • Repeat hands above your head and folding forward – feel free to hang out in the fold before coming back up to standing.

Feel free to repeat the sequence a few times.  You may find that you are more flexible during the last sequence. Be sure to take your time and focus on your breath in and out with your movement.

For more information on this pose please check out Yoga Journal  or watch Yoga With Adriene on YouTube.

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

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