Awake & Evolve: Cycle 4 - Arm Balance Flow
Find a standing mountain pose, grounding your feet down into the floor, lengthening through the spine, and relaxing your gaze. Take a few minutes here listening to your breath and preparing for your practice.
From downward dog move the body into a plank position and take 5 deep breaths. Come down towards the floor coming through knees-chest-chin to lie down on the floor. Take a deep breath and press back up to plank pose and hold for 5 deep breaths. Repeat this vinyasa for 10-15 rounds or more. If you are able to do full strict push ups to come down to the floor then skip the knees-chest-chin and challenge yourself with push ups and holding in plank pose.
*Yogi’s Tip- make sure you keep you hands in a close grip push up position for the plank pose. As you lower down the elbows should graze the ribs *no chicken wings*.
From downward dog pose flow into warrior 1 pose on the right leg for 5 deep breaths.Try to find your alignment by squaring the hips forward and extending the arms overhead. Feel your thighs become strong as you deeply lunge into the warrior 1 pose. After your last breath begin to move into warrior 2 pose. Square the hips to the side, lengthen through the arms, and turn your head to gaze at your front middle finger taking 5 deep breaths. Come back to downward dog and then repeat the entire series on the left side. After completing one slow round on each side begin to flow with the breath through the vinyasa at your own pace. For this cycle take only 1-3 deep breaths in each pose. Try to work though at least 3-5 rounds on each side of the warrior vinyasa.
From downward dog come down into a squat position with your feet a few inches wider than hip distance apart. If you have any issues with flexibility and can not place your heels down to the floor, then add a folded blanket under the heels. In the squat pose your knees should be wider than your hips. Stay in this squat for 10-15 breaths or challenge yourself with crow pose. From the squat, lean the torso forward and stretch your arms forward, bend your elbows and place your hands on the floor. Come up onto the balls of your feet and lean forward putting the weight of your body onto the upper arms. Round your back and draw you belly in super tight to support your balance. Try to feel the legs squeezing against the arms as you press the hands firmly to the floor. Gaze forward or lift your head slightly finding a focus point for balance. Come back and forth into this pose 3-5 times testing you balance and practicing your technique. Try to hold each pose for 3-5 breaths.
*Yogi’s Tip- grab a few pillows to place in front of your body when attempting crow pose so you have a place to crash if needed.
Lying on down on your back draw your legs over your body and slowly lower your toes to the floor above your head. Try lift your top thighs and tailbone toward the ceiling. Release your hands and stretch the arms around behind you on the floor clasping the hands and pressing actively down to support your body as you lift your thighs up to the ceiling. Your body weight is held in the shoulders, and completely out of head and neck for the duration of the pose. Stay here as long as you are comfortable and you feel no pressure or pain in the neck. Slowly roll down to rest on the spine for 2-3 minutes feeling the effects of the posture.