As you probably already know if you’ve been following the blog or Facebook page, I recently wrapped up my yoga teacher training in Boca Raton, Florida and have been continuing teaching yoga-dance fusion classes back in my home state of Kentucky. A few of you asked me to share some of the specific flows I’ve been teaching. Well, ask and ye shall receive! I’ll be sharing more flows, and even including a soundtrack of some of my favorite music to use during yoga classes, so keep checking back. I’ll be adding more yoga and meditation resources in the near future… For now, this should be enough to get ya started!
Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga Warm Up
Difficulty: Beginner (Level 1) to Intermediate (Level 2)
Type: Ashtanga Inspired Vinyasa
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Instructions / Sequence:
1) Before any workout or yoga practice, you should stretch to warm up and cool down afterwards. Not warming up, cooling down and stretching properly might result in personal injury. Additionally, before working out or practicing yoga, you should avoid alcohol, drugs, and heavy meals. Keep yourself well hydrated before, during and after your workout routine or yoga practice.
2) Start your practice by choosing an intention and being mindful of it throughout your practice.
3) Stretch your wrists, ankles, calves, arms. Come into cat-cow posture for a few breaths. Do some child’s pose if it feels good to your body.
3) On an EXHALE, come into Downward Facing Dog
4) INHALE your right leg up to the sky
5) EXHALE your right ankle down towards your glutes
6) INHALE your right leg back up to the sky
7) EXHALE swinging your right leg through, resting it in between your fingertips as you come into a lunge. Look up, gazing forward, and hold your strong lunge for 3 breaths.
8) After the third breath, INHALE as you straighten both legs and raise your hips.
9) EXHALE, folding over the front leg, keeping both legs straight. Hold here for 3 strong breaths.
10) INHALE back up into a lunge, gazing forward.
11) EXHALE sitting back on top of your left foot, with your right leg stretched out in front of you. Grab the big toe on your right foot and pull the foot back towards your body to square the hips.
12) INHALE as you raise your arms straight up beside your ears, shoulders relaxed, back straight and tall, hips and shoulders squared.
13) EXHALE as you reach with the arms, leading with the chest, and lower yourself into a fold over the straight leg.
14) INHALE as you lengthen more over the leg.
15) EXHALE as you fold forward, stretching deeper over the leg. Reach for the foot, leg, or even the yoga mat. It’s okay to bend the leg as much as you need to.
16) Take three breaths here, trying to lengthen more with each INHALE and fold forward more with each EXHALE.
17) INHALE as you rise up into crescent, arms overhead, or into a modified Warrior One if you need a slightly more advanced posture.
18) EXHALE as you fold your hands behind your back, interlacing the fingers.
19) INHALE as you look up and lengthen your spine.
20) Stay here for three strong breaths.
21) EXHALE your hands into prayer at heart center
22) INHALE, lengthening your chest over your front leg, abs engaged.
23) EXHALE as you twist to the right, resting your elbow beside your knee.
24) INHALE as you lengthen more.
25) EXHALE as you twist more.
26) Stay here for three strong breaths, lengthening with every INHALE and twisting with every EXHALE.
27) After taking three strong breaths, EXHALE as you slowly twist your upper body back to the center and then release your hands to the floor, framing each side of your front foot. Come back into a lunge, fingers aligned with your toes.
28) INHALE as you kick the right leg back up to the sky.
29) EXHALE as you bring the right foot into your left glute.
30) INHALE as you kick the right leg back up to the sky.
31) EXHALE as you bring the right foot down to the floor, coming back to Downward Facing Dog.
32) Take three strong breaths here, walking out your legs, shaking your hips, and breathing deeply as you lengthen and stretch your body.
33) Repeat steps 1 – 31 on the left side.
At this point, you should be good and warmed up. Your heartrate has probably increased and I bet you might have even broken a sweat just from this warm up! If you’re a beginner (or if you’re in a hurry, or just winded) then it’s fine to stop here. If you need more of a challenge, you can move on to your next yoga practice or workout. I’ll leave that one up to you — but the most important things are to listen to your body and stay hydrated!
I’ll be posting some more yoga sequences in the near future so keep checking back for more…