Supported bridge is great to prep for deeper backbends or in lieu of them on a day when you are fatigued. Place the block at the right height for you and in the right spot so the low back feels long, even as the chest feels open. Lengthen the tailbone toward the back of the knees while pressing the shoulders down into the mat so both the front and back of the spine feel long and supported.
Chair shoulderstands can be really soothing for the nervous system. Getting into them, not so much! Instead of slithering to the ground head first like it's no big deal, we do a lot of prep work right side up. We warm up the body and get centered (read: core work!) first. Then, step by step, we gather ourselves into the chair and gracefully find our way into the support of the chair, the comfort of the wall, and land on blankets to support the shoulders... staying center and grounded so that the pose feels like a soft place to land and a sweet spot to rest. Then you will be gently guided into releasing the pose and resting on solid ground with a new perspective and a quiet mind.
Sometimes we all feel a little stuck - at home, on the road or in a rut. I find doing something familiar in a new way gets me motivated and moving. Familiar is soothing. New is inspiring. This session guides you through familiar poses, like bridge, with some different variations and props to keep it interesting... and to keep you moving! Use a couple of pillows and a towel to get cozy and relaxed at the end of this simple strengthening session.
A moderate post-natal flow to ease you back into your Vinyasa practice. Re-discover your body and breath post birth. Gentle Vinyasa helps to warm the muscles & standing poses allow for centering and grounding. Chest openers help to ease any muscular strain of holding and nursing a new baby! Enjoy!
Whether you've been on a plane for twelve hours, in a car, or just sitting at your desk for too long, this is for you! A mellow, steady flow to build some heat followed by lots of nice stretching for your psoas, hip flexors, quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, shoulders and chest! Yes, please! Supported bridge pose and supported shoulder stand followed by a nice hold in a wide straddle forward fold send you into Savasana feeling like yourself again, only better ;)
When you're not in the mood to do anything and you know moving will (almost always) make you feel better, get some props and roll around on your mat - or your bed?! This hip-opening session has your hips on a blanket for extra traction in your lower back. Rocking around on the blanket is a super sweet way to massage your lower back. Enjoy opening your whole body with minimal effort and maximum support! Make sure you have blocks/bolster/support to place your feet on to avoid over-stretching the front body and compressing the back body so you truly feel equanimous - open and at ease.
If you have tender knees, the safest and simplest way to build strength is on your back. Then it's time to engage gravity from sitting and standing positions with neutral legs. I am sitting on 2 blocks to start this session, but you can sit in a chair instead and get the same benefits. We'll use the wall to shift weight out of the knees while finding the right amount of movement that builds strength without strain. Root down into your feet and rise up out of your seat to power up your legs. Feel yourself getting stronger, gaining more movement and fluidity as you stick to this practice. It's simple but not easy for any body, but your knees are worth it!
Do you need a little guidance when it comes to relaxation? Giving attention to the subtle sensations of the body can quiet the mind and allow you to settle into stillness. Add a little vetruvian man-style supported backbend to give you just enough sensation to feel the front body open as the back body sinks into support. And find yourself arriving in a place of relaxation, peaceful and at ease.
If you woke up with a stiff neck or sat too long at your computer, you'll enjoy this simple practice to unwind tension in your neck and whole spine. If you have chronic tension or something more serious, be sure to see the big picture and know that this is only one piece of the puzzle. If this works for you, yay! You can do it before you even get out of bed in the morning!