Outfit gifted by Dot Dash Activewear
It's been forever since I've shared a yoga tutorial or even a yoga related post but I'm back with a BANG! Since I've been doing CrossFit and using different muscles more, I've noticed my yoga practice has changed hugely. What once was a flowey 'pretty' practice has now become a more practical (at times!) way to stretch my body and calm my mind at the same time.
If you're a CrossFitter, you'll know that that 2019 CrossFit open has just started. If, like me, you've already done the first workout you may be aching, tight and in need of a little MOT. These poses aren't specifically for CrossFit, they are great for cyclists, runners, weightlifters, or anyone who fancies a good old stretch.
There is no right or wrong in terms of breath or how long you should do these moves for, just work with your body, do what feels good for you, modify where you need to and, more than anything listen to your body. It really is the best guidance. If you really have no idea where to start or you're completely new to yoga, hold each pose for 5-10 breaths and repeat as many times as you need to.Check out my Instagram post here to see the flow in action
Mobility and a good range of movement are paramount to everyday life. If you are a CrossFitter or athlete, you will find doing this routine a few times a week, will help in many areas of your body..
Stand with the feet slightly wider than hip width with the toes turned out slightly and slowly bend your knees and lower your seat towards the floor, keeping the back straight and the chest lifted (lift the heels if this pose isn't readily available) until you come to a squat position. Taking the right hand to the outside of the right foot, sweep the left hand towards the ceiling following with the gaze to open out the chest, repeat on the opposite side)
With the feet about hip width apart, hinge from the hips, keeping the knees soft and take the chest towards the thighs and the crown of the head towards the floor, gently cycle the legs by bending the knees to release the hamstrings. Clasp the hands behind the back and take them over the head to release the shoulders. Keep the heels of the hands pressed together.
Walk the 'downward dog'
From downward dog gently pedal the feet and legs by bending one knee and coming to the balls of the feet then repeating on the other side. Keeping the heels lifted and the knees soft. The spine should be long and the hips high (gently nodding and shaking the head at the same time feels so good too!)
Low lunge/half split combo
Transitioning between these two poses as many times as you need opens and stretches the hips and the hamstrings in equal measures. Come into a low lunch firstly with the right knee forward and stacked over the right ankle, place the right hand gently on the knee or hip for support and sweep the left hand towards the sky. Frame the right foot and gently start to straighten the right knee, shifting your weight backwards and aiming the seat towards the heels. Walk the hands back as needed for comfort. Keep the chest lifted and the right toes flexed to really lengthen the hamstring. Repeat the 2 poses on the opposite side.
From downward dog step your right foot forwards between you hands, drop your left heel to the floor, angle your left toes about 45 degrees and windmill the arms to shoulder height. The hips should be open wide, the shoulders down and the gaze over the middle finger of the front hand. Keep a bend in the front knee so the knee tracks directly over the ankle. Ground the outer edge of the back foot into the mat to spiral open the back hip. Try straightening and re-bending the front leg to add a little movement and sink a little deeper into the hip
Wide Leg Forward fold with twist
Standing with the legs wider than hip width and the legs straight, lengthen the spine, hinge from the hips and lead with the chest taking a forward fold, again, aiming the chest towards the thighs. Take the hands to the floor or the backs of the calves and ankles. Place the right hand under the face and on an inhale sweep the left ha.d towards the sky, making a straight line with both arms. Replace the left hand on an exhale and repeat on the other side.
Low side lunge
From a wide legged stance, angle the right toes to 45 degrees and bend into the right knee into a half squat position , keeping the left leg straight and flex the left toes to the ceiling. Place the right hand on the floor just in front of the foot and sweep the left hand to the sky, repeat on the other side.
Goddess with eagle arms
From a wide legged stance, flare the toes outwards slightly. Keeping the core engaged and tailbone tucked bend the knees, gently pressing them outwards, till they reach approx 90 degrees. Take the arms straight out to shoulder height and gently cross the left arm on top of the right till the backs of the hands or palms are facing each other, lift the fingers towards the sky so the elbows are above the shoulders and breathe, repeat on the other side.
Upward facing dog
From a prone position extend the legs and press the tops of the feet into the floor. Place the hands beside your waist and press the palms into the floor. Inhale and start to straighten the arms and lift the torso, thighs and knees. Keep the glutes engaged and quads firm. Lift through the sternum and prevent the shoulders from rolling forwards and towards the ears (imagine the shoulder blades melting down the spine). Keep the gaze forwards.
To see the flow in action, head over to my instagram post and give it save so you can give it a go when you need it most! Remember to tag me if you try it and most importantly remember to breathe in all the poses!