Daily Yoga Pose
Pose Name: Revolved Side Angle Pose
Sanskrit Pose Name: Utthita Parsvakonasana
Chakra: Sacral Chakra
Level of Pose: Intermediate
Health Benefits: Good for osteoporosis, strengthens legs, stomach, helps relieve sciatica, improves digestion, loosens tightness in the back, stimulates internal organs, reduces constipation.
Emotional Benefits: Increases creative energy.
Instructions: As you move into and out of the pose, use ujjayi breathing which is a constriction of the back of the throat that slows your inhale and exhale making it audible and helps send oxygen to the areas you're stretching. Start in plank pose (push up position) and step your right leg forward between your hands. Raise your left hand so your arms are in one line and your body is open to the side. Raise your torso so you're upright in the lunge and then bring your hands into prayer pose. Cross your left elbow to the right as you lengthen your spine and hook your left elbow outside of your right knee. Breath deeply. Come out of the pose slowly and back to plank pose so you can do the same thing on the opposite side.
Pose Name: Splits
Sanskrit Pose Name: Hanumanasana
Chakra: Sacral and Root Chakra
Level of Pose: Advanced
Health Benefits: Stimulates digestion and helps reproductive organs. Stretches groin, thighs, hips and back. Stretches hamstrings to reduce lower back pain.
Emotional Benefits: Helps relieve stress and tension.
Instructions: Start in a lunge position with your right leg forward and your left knee on the ground. Start to straighten your front leg and slide the right heel forward until you feel a stretch but not pain. Keep one hand on each side of the leg to help take some pressure off. You may want to use blocks under your hands. Keep your left hip pulling forward so the hips are square. Stay in the position as long as you would like breathing deeply and then switch sides.
Pose Name: Shoulder Stand
Sanskrit Pose Name: Salamba Sarvangasana
Chakra: Throat Chakra and Third-Eye Chakra
Level of Pose: Beginner
Health Benefits: Improves digestion and circulation. Strengthens immune system and nervous system. Strengthens core and shoulders. Reduces headaches. Improves heart health and brain function.
Emotional Benefits: Relieves emotional stress. Energizes, elevates mood, and increases clarity and focus.
Instructions: Begin laying on your back and bring your legs up to 90 degrees like you're going to stand on the ceiling. Place your palms face down next to your hips. During this pose, do not turn your head to the side in order to protect your upper spine. Lift your hips and place your hands on your lower back so your feet go straight up. Keep lifting your hips until your spine is straight and your chin presses into your chest. Take 5 deep ujjayi breaths here through your nose. Slowly allow your spine to come back to the ground.
Pose Name: Butterfly
Sanskrit Pose Name: Baddha Konasana
Chakra: Root Chakra
Level of Pose: Beginner
Health Benefits: Stretches your hips to improve mobility and reduces menstrual cramping. Helps the reproductive organ health, stimulates digestion, improves posture and stretches the thighs. It's great for a healthy pregnancy as well as a healthy prostate. Helps reduce headaches.
Emotional Benefits: Releases anger and allows one to get in touch with their passion. Can reduce scattered thinking to help you find stillness.
Instructions: Sit on the floor and bring the soles of your feet together, interlacing your fingers like a basket under your feet. Straighten your back and pull your sternum up and forward. Breathe deeply and lean forward, bringing your forehead towards the floor. Breathe deeply and hold the position while you continue to energetically pull your knees towards the floor.
Pose Name: Cow
Sanskrit Pose Name: Bitilasana
Chakra: Solar Plexus and Sacral Chakra
Level of Pose: Beginner
Health Benefits: Improves digestion, spinal mobility and reduces back pain. It's great for internal organ health and immune system.
Emotional Benefits: Helps you feel calm, balanced and present to your body and its needs. It can help reduce stress significantly as well as fatigue.
Instructions: Begin on all fours and as you inhale drop your belly button towards the ground so your spine looks like a hammock. Lift your chin and stretch the front of your neck. Find the maximum extension in the spinal arch. Do this pose with cat pose for the maximum benefits moving slowly with the breath between the two poses.
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.