Long and Lean Full-Body Yoga Flow
It’s time to slow it down and work your muscles while lengthening them| so today’s workout is a yoga flow to help you get long and lean. It’s perfect for stretching tight muscles while working your arms and core in surprising new ways.
Directions: move through the entire 12-pose sequence on the right side| and then repeat on the left.
| Downward Facing Dog
- Come onto the hands and knees with your wrists underneath your shoulders and your knees underneath your hips.
- Inhale as you tuck your toes under your heels. Then exhale to lift your hips| coming into the classic upside-down-V shape called Downward Facing Dog.
- Spread your fingers wide| and create a straight line between your middle fingers and elbows. Work on straightening your legs and lowering your heels toward the ground. Relax your head between your arms| and direct your gaze through your legs or up toward your belly button.
- Breathe deeply for five breaths.
| Warrior 1
- From Down Dog| inhale to step your right foot forward between your hands. Turn your left heel in| press into your feet| and lift your torso up.
- Raise your arms up| and press your palms together. Draw your shoulder blades down toward your hips| and gaze up toward your hands.
- Stay here for five breaths.
| Rotated Side Angle Prayer
- Hold your legs in Warrior 1 position| and on an exhale| cross your left elbow over your right thigh.
- Press your palms together firmly| and push into your bottom arm to lengthen the spine and increase the twist.
- Gaze over your right shoulder| breathing for five full breaths.
| Reverse Warrior
- From Rotated Side Angle Prayer| inhale to lift the torso up. With an exhale| gently arch back and lower your left hand down| resting it on the back of your left leg.
- Raise your right arm overhead| feeling the stretch through the right side of your body. Continue to lower your hips| pressing your front knee forward so it’s directly over your right ankle.
- Remain here for five complete breaths.
| Half Moon
- From Reverse Warrior| inhale to lift your torso| and tip forward. Plant your right palm about a foot in front of your right toes. Straighten your right leg| and lift your left leg in the air.
- Distribute your weight evenly between your right hand and foot. Lift your left arm up| and gaze toward your left hand.
- Hold for five breaths.
| Bound Extended Side Angle
- From Half Moon| bend your front knee| and release your left foot back into Warrior 1 position.
- Lower your right shoulder as low as you can beside your right inner thigh| and reach your right arm underneath your hamstring. Reach your left arm around your lower back| and bind| holding your left wrist with your right hand. If this is difficult| then hold onto a strap or towel.
- Draw your upper shoulder back as far as you can| and gaze into the left corners of your eyes. Try to stack your shoulders and lengthen through your spine as you draw your belly in.
- Stay here for five breaths.
| Wide-Legged Forward Bend C
- From Bound Extended Side Angle| unclasp your hands| straighten your right leg| and inhale to stand up.
- Exhale to adjust both feet| so your toes are pointing in.
- Inhale to bring your hands behind you| clasping your fingers together in a double fist| heels of your palms pressing together firmly.
- As you exhale| fold forward with straight legs and a long spine.
- Keep your weight shifted forward in your toes as you enjoy this stretch for five breaths.
| Open Lizard
- From Wide-Legged Forward Bend C| exhale to release your hands to the floor. Inhale to bend your right knee| and turn your torso to face it.
- Rest your hands at the front of your mat| and exhale as you lower your right knee toward the floor| resting on the outside edge of your right foot.
- Gaze up toward the ceiling to increase the stretch| holding for five breaths.
- From Open Lizard| inhale to draw your right heel in toward your left hip| resting on the outside of your right thigh.
- Exhale to lower your forearms to the floor. Stay here| or flatten your torso on your right shin for a deeper stretch.
- Breath deeply for five breaths.
| Seated Spinal Twist
- From Pigeon| sit up and swing your back leg forward. Bend your left knee| and place your left heel as close to your right sit bone as you can. Cross your right foot over your left knee| and plant it on the floor| so your outer right ankle is next to your left knee.
- Reach your right arm behind you| and place your palm on the floor. Cross your left elbow over your outer right thigh to gently increase the twist.
- Gaze behind you and over your right shoulder| staying here for five breaths.
| Half Wheel
- From Seated Spinal Twist| inhale to bring your torso back to center. Exhale to lie on your back.
- Bend your knees| and place your feet flat on the floor. Walk your heels as close as you can to your tush| and turn your heels out slightly| so the outside edges of your feet are parallel with the outside edges of your mat.
- Lift your hips up| and place your hands on either side of your lower back. Rock your weight from side to side| so you can pull your shoulder blades closer together.
- Stay here for five deep breaths| actively pressing your feet into the floor to lift your hips up and increase the stretch in your torso and neck.
- Gently lower your bum back to the ground| and hug your knees into your chest.
- Work your way back to Down Dog| and repeat this sequence on your left side before coming into Savasana.
- Lie on your back| and close your eyes. In order to relax and open your body fully| extend your arms a few inches away from the body| with your palms facing up.
- Bring about 15 to 20 inches between your feet| allowing your feet to fall open with your toes pointing out. Actively shrug your shoulders and shoulder blades down toward your hips. Lengthen through your spine as much as possible| and try to press the small of your back into the floor.
- After you’ve found a comfortable position| enjoy the stillness for five to 10 minutes.