Daily Yoga Pose
Pose Name: Happy Baby
Sanskrit Pose Name: Ananda Balasana
Chakra: Root and Sacral Chakra
Level of Pose: Beginner
Health Benefits: Realigns spine, stretches and relieves lower back. Stretches groin and inner thighs.
Emotional Benefits: Lowers stress and allows energy to flow better to all chakras.
Instructions: Begin laying down on your back and then bend your legs and lift them so you can grab the outsides of your feet. Keep your elbows inside of your knees and pull your feet down to stretch your hips and bring your knees closer to the ground. Breathe deeply and rock gently side to side in this position to massage the muscles that line the spine.
Pose Name: Extended Triangle Pose
Sanskrit Pose Name: Trikonasana
Chakra: Solar Plexus Chakra
Level of Pose: Beginner
Health Benefits: Strengthens legs, core and shoulders. Stretches, ankles, hips, calves and hamstrings. Improves circulation and digestion. Improves balance.
Emotional Benefits: Increases will power and builds positivity. Improves ability to focus, creativity and heal emotional wounds from relationships. Helps you open to love.
Instructions: Start standing with your feet together. Step your right foot foward three feet and turn your back toes out slightly. Place your hands on your hips and inhale lifting your chest. Exhale as you lean over your right leg and then reach your arms forward to the ground. Take a few deep ujayyi breaths here. As you inhale lift your left hand to the sky opening the front of your chest to the side. Place the right hand or fingertips on the ground outside of your right leg and bring the arms in one line perpendicular to the ground. Look up at your top hand. Pull the hips away from each other and press the back edge of your back foot towards the ground. Inhale coming all the way up and back to standing with your feet together. Repeat the same thing on the opposite side.
Pose Name: Lotus
Sanskrit Pose Name: Padmasana
Chakra: Root Chakra
Level of Pose: Advanced
Health Benefits: Good for relieving sciatica, menstrual problems and improving posture. Stretches the hips, thighs and ankles. Stimulates the lymphatic system to cleanse viruses from the body. Strengthens the spine and helps get rid of disease, according to ancient yogis.
Emotional Benefits: Calms the mind and helps increase awareness while providing a sense of grounding. Induces a meditative state or allows one to meditate easier. Helps release emotions stored in hips like anger, fear and resentment.
Instructions: This position requires open hips. You can begin with half lotus to prepare yourself for full lotus. With both legs out in front of you, bend one leg and bring the heel towards the opposite hip. Never force and to protect the knee, rotate your thigh externally in its socket to turn your foot up, letting it rest in the hip crease. Once the knee easily rests on the ground, lean forward gently. Add the other other leg by doing the same on the other side and crossing it over the first one.
Pose Name: Heron
Sanskrit Pose Name: Krounchasana
Chakra: Sacral and Root Chakras
Level of Pose: Intermediate
Health Benefits: Improves back strength, circulation to hips and legs, and stretches hips and hamstrings. Stimulates internal organs.
Emotional Benefits: The deep hip stretch provides a release for built-up emotions so you can see from a new perspective with a more expanded viewpoint.
Instructions: Begin sitting on your left heel with your right leg out in front of you. Wrap your two peace fingers around the big toe on your right foot and lift the right foot as high as you can while keeping your right leg straight. Try to bring your nose to your knee and breathe deeply for a few rounds of breath before switching sides. Throughout the pose, try to keep the spine lifted and tall.
Pose Name: Dragonfly
Sanskrit Pose Name: Maksikasagasana
Chakra: Solar Plexus, Heart, and Sacral Chakras
Level of Pose: Advanced
Health Benefits: Stretches hips, spine, and IT band. Strengthens core, hands, wrists, arms, shoulders, and stimulates digestion.
Emotional Benefits: Releases emotional energy of grief and sadness. Builds self-confidence and frees up energy stored in your spine to make you more vivacious.
Instructions: Begin standing with your feet together. Pick up the left foot and cross it over the right knee, making a figure four with your legs. Keep the left foot flexed as you bring the palms together at heart center and sit back so your forearms come together with your left shin. Place your hands to your right on the floor with fingers spread and plant your left foot on the back of your left arm at the armpit. Lean forward, keeping your head up to transfer weight into your hands as you straighten your right leg when it lifts off the ground. Breathe and slowly come out the way you went in so you can switch to the other side.
What is Yoga?
In Sanskrit, yoga literally refers to a connection or uniting, or the act of discipline. A practice that dates back thousands of years, yoga involves a combination of meditation, movement, and spirituality to bring us into connection with the Universal energy that allows us to connect with our soul. Yoga guides us to enlightenment, not just through the flows and poses themselves, but through a retraining of the mind that harnesses the energy of the body to expand one’s consciousness. Yoga has many forms and the benefits reach far beyond the physical body. Like meditation, yoga is a personal practice that will look different from person to person.
What are the Different Types of Yoga?
In the west, there are 22 main different types of yoga. The poses in traditional yoga are called asanas. The traditional branches of yoga include Hatha, Vinyasa, Iyengar, Anusara, and Ashtanga. Traditional yoga almost always includes mantras, breathwork, and meditation. Kriya yoga, kundalini yoga, and yoga nidra focus more on the emotions, mind, and soul through a development of the mind and energetic body. Recently, more westernized versions have evolved, giving us Bikram, Restorative, Yin, hot yoga, and many other variations.
It’s important to realize that every type of yoga will have an entirely different feeling, depending on the style, speed, environment, and the teacher (if there is one) - so don’t let one bad experience throw you off. Yoga takes study, persistence and personal dedication. Keep experimenting until you find the style that works best for you and your unique needs.
How to Decide Which Type of Yoga is Best For You
If you are looking to lose weight, a regular vinyasa or heated vinyasa class can help speed up your metabolism. The emotions can best be aided in slower, more traditional forms of yoga where meditation and breathwork are prioritized. Hatha yoga is a great way to prepare the body to sit in meditation. Ultimately, reading about the types of yoga will allow you to intuitively pick a type that will help you grow the most.
If you’re dealing with substance abuse, depression, anxiety, or abusive relationships, just getting to class can be difficult. Not everyone has access to a yoga studio either. At Daily Life, we want to assist you in developing your yoga practice by meeting you exactly where you’re at. Check this page every day for a new daily yoga pose that you can experiment with in the comfort of your own home.
How Does Yoga Affect Mental Health?
Yoga is continually prescribed to help people with depression, PTSD, anxiety, and other mental health issues. While yoga is not a substitute for serious mental health condition treatments, it can be incredibly impactful as a supplement in the healing process. Yoga helps regulate the chemical balance and hormones in the body, bringing the mind, body, and soul into harmony. Because yoga teaches us how to manage our mind while strengthening the physical vessel we take through the world every day, yoga can be a crucial catalyst of growth and healing.
How Does Yoga Improve the Mind?
Yoga works by making you more conscious of your mind, allowing you more control over what you keep inside it. For many people, yoga is actually much more about the mind than the body. A lot of people don’t realize the myriad mental benefits of yoga that they keep going back because they start to feel a little better each time. The gentle coaxing of the teacher, the fluidity and flow of movement, and the calmness of the yogic mind all contribute to the health of the mind.
How Does Yoga Affect the Soul?
Yoga’s purpose is to connect you with your soul. The Ego, the sense of one’s self as a physical being in the world, often obstructs our ability to communicate with the soul, which is where the true self is housed. Yoga allows us to raise our health and emotional state to be able to perceive the higher frequency through which our soul communicates with us. Once we establish a clear channel through which to access our soul, we can align our thoughts, motivations, words, and actions to be in harmony with ourselves and the life force that we are all a part of on this planet.
How Does Yoga Improve the Body?
Yoga improves the 10 main systems of your body: skeletal, muscular, circulatory, digestive, urinary, reproductive, lymphatic, nervous, endocrine, and respiratory systems. As if that’s not enough, yoga is designed to bring harmony and balance to the mind, body, and soul. If the mind and soul are not in balance, the body will feel the effects. Adopting a regular yoga practice into your daily life will allow your brain function to improve and your body to detox as well as strengthen itself to defend against illness naturally. Yoga is the science of optimization.
Can Yoga Assist in Weight Loss?
Yes! Yoga stimulates the metabolism and internal organs, regulating digestion. With consistent practice, yoga builds momentum that aids in weight loss in various ways. As your muscles grow and strengthen, your body burns more fat since the fat cells store the energy that is used to feed the muscles. Even breathwork can improve the metabolism because it creates heat in the body, causing the metabolism to speed up. Of course, yoga is not an overnight fix (but what is?) and the results will be greater with more frequent practice.