4 Easy Yoga Poses That Banish Stress Instantly

07/06/2018 - 06:06 PM

I'd like to say that I'm a zen yogi who always has a cool, calm mind; positive perspective; and zero-tolerance policy for things that don't serve my highest good . . . But I'd be lying. What yoga has given me, however, is the awareness to stop myself in the moment, recognize what is happening, roll out my mat, breathe deep, and feel better sooner.

I may not always have the time or necessary gear for a full-length class when things are feeling crazy, but I can always stop what I'm doing and relax into the following five poses — no matter where I am or what I'm wearing. It may not change what's happening around me, but it always leaves me with a refreshed point of view and a way better attitude.

Downward Facing Dog

Downward Facing Dog brings oxygenated blood to your whole body, leaving you feeling energized and refreshed. Stay here for longer than usual today, let go of what is busying your mind, and start realizing how strong you are!

Standing Forward Bend

Let all the anxiety holding you back melt away in Standing Forward Bend. When you're in this pose, imagine that all your stressors are rolling off your back and onto the floor. For an even deeper stretch, focus on letting go of any tension in the back of your neck. Your spine and neck muscles will get a huge release.

Child's Pose

Come to your knees, breathe deep, and relax in a long and luxurious Child's Pose. Keep your arms out in front of you and rest your forehead on your mat, or if it feels good, try something new and stretch your arms back behind you with your palms facing down, resting on the mat. This will offer a big stretch to tense and wound-up shoulders.

Head-to-Knee Pose

I hold all of my emotions in my hips, and Head-to-Knee Pose gives my hips and hamstrings what feels like a minimassage. Since I started practicing, this has been one of my favorite yoga poses.

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