Brain Boost: Seated

This 23 step sequence of seated yoga postures was designed to invigorate the mind and promote focus and concentration. Level: Basic to Beginner.

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1. Start in Easy Pose

yoga postureA. Inhale and press the hips down and reach the crown up to lengthen the spine. Roll the shoulders down and back to open the chest. Relax the face and rest the tongue on the roof of the mouth.

B. Lengthen the inhalation and exhalation by breathing deeply into the belly through the nose. Release any thoughts or distractions and let the mind be focused on the breath.

C. Breathe and hold for 10-30 breaths.

Optional: practice Kapalabhati Pranayama

2. Come into Table position on your hands and knees

yoga postureA. Place the palms under the shoulders and the knees under the hips.

B. The back is flat and the gaze is between the hands.

C. Press back through the tailbone and forward through the crown of the head to lengthen the spine.

3. Inhale into Dog Tilt

yoga postureA. Reach the tailbone up towards the ceiling by arching the spine and letting the belly drop towards the floor.

B. Press down into the palms to drop the shoulders away from the ears and look up at the ceiling.

4. Exhale into Cat Tilt

yoga postureA. Tuck the tailbone under by rounding the spine and pulling the belly up towards the spine.

B. Press down into the palms to reach the middle of the back up towards the ceiling. Let the head hang from the neck.

5. Repeat #3 and #4 moving with the breath 3-6 times

6. From Table, inhale into Balancing Table

yoga postureA. Inhale the right leg and left arm up parallel to the floor, stare at a point on the floor for balance.

B. Breathe and hold for 2-5 breaths.

7. From Table, exhale into Downward Facing Dog

yoga postureA. Tuck the toes under, bend the elbows and lift the hips up and back.

B. Press firmly into the hands and arms to press the hips back. Let the head hang from the neck.

C. Press the heels into the floor. The legs are straight or can be slightly bent to flatten the back.

D. Breathe and hold for 3-6 breaths.

8. Inhale and step right forward into Low Warrior

yoga postureA. Step the foot between the two hands with the knee directly over the ankle. Lower the back knee and top of foot to the floor.

B. Press the legs down into the floor as you lift out of the waist reaching the crown and fingertips up towards the ceiling. Relax the shoulders down from the ears and press the chest forward.

C. Breathe and hold for 2-5 breaths.

9. From Low Lunge, exhale into Downward Facing Dog

yoga postureA. Tuck the toes under, bend the elbows and lift the hips up and back.

B. Press firmly into the hands and arms to press the hips back. Let the head hang from the neck.

C. Press the heels into the floor. The legs are straight or can be slightly bent to flatten the back.

D. Breathe and hold for 3-6 breaths.

10. Come into Table position on your hands and knees

yoga postureA. Place the palms under the shoulders and the knees under the hips.

B. The back is flat and the gaze is between the hands.

C. Press back through the tailbone and forward through the crown of the head to lengthen the spine.

11. Repeat # 6 through #10 on opposite side

12. Exhale and bend the knees to the floor into Child Pose

yoga postureA. Press the hips to the heels with the tops of the feet flat to the floor. Let the forehead rest on the floor and allow the body to completely relax.

B. Breathe deeply into the belly for 3-6 breaths.

13. Hold onto the heels and inhale into Rabbit

yoga postureA. Hold onto each heel with each hand, bring the forehead against the knees and the crown against the floor.

B. Inhale and lift the hips up towards the ceiling. to round the spine. Keep holding tightly onto the heels.

C. Breathe and hold for 3-6 breaths. Exhale and release back to Child Pose.

14. Drop the hips to the side and bring the feet forward into Bound Angle

yoga posture A. With the bottom of the feet together, interlace the fingers around the toes. Press down into the hips and up through the crown. Roll the shoulders down and back and press the chest forward.

B. Close the eyes and look up at the third eye point.

C. Breathe and hold for 3-7 breaths.

15. From Bound Angle, inhale and lean back into Balancing Bound Angle

yoga posture A. With the fingers interlaced around the toes, lean back enough to lift the heels and inch or two off the floor. Keep the shoulders down and back and the chest lifted. Stay here or lift the feet to the level of the heart.

B. Breathe and hold for 2-4 breaths. Exhale the feet back into Bound Angle.

16. From Balancing Bound Angle, inhale and kick the feet into Balancing Bear

yoga postureA. Hold onto the feet with each hand and lean back to lift the heels off the floor. Kick the heels out towards the corners of the room to straighten the legs. Keep the shoulders down and back and the chest lifted. Stare at a point for balance.

B. Breathe and hold for 2-4 breaths. Exhale bending the knees to lower the feet back down to the floor.

17. Inhale the arms up and exhale forward into Forward Bend

yoga postureA. Bend the knees enough to hold onto the feet or ankles. Round the spine and press the head in towards the knees.

B. Press out though the heels and pull back on the toes. Relax the head, neck and shoulders.

C. Breathe and hold for 3-6 breaths. Slowly roll up to Staff Pose

18. Lift the legs up into Boat

yoga postureA. Bend the knees with the feet flat on the floor. Bring the arms parallel to the floor. Inhale and lean back to lift the heels and inch or two off the floor.

B. Stare at a point for balance. Press out through the heels to straighten the legs

C. Breathe and hold for 2-5 breaths.

19. bend the knees, inhale and lift into Crab Pose

yoga postureA. Bend the knees with the feet flat on the floor hip width apart. Bring the hands behind your hips with the fingers pointed towards the back wall.

B. Press the feet down and lift the hips up. Look up or drop the head back. Press down into the palms and lift the chest up.

C. Breathe and hold for 1-4 breaths. Exhale and lower the hips down to the floor.

20. Slowly roll onto your back and bend the knees into Wind Relieving Pose

yoga postureA. Bend the knees into the chest and wrap the arms around them, holding on to the elbows, wrists or fingers.

B. Press the tailbone, shoulders and back of the neck down into the floor as you pull the knees in to feel a stretch in the low back.

C. Breathe and hold for 2-5 breaths.

21. Lift the legs up into Half Shoulder Stand

yoga postureA. Bend the knees to the forehead and bring the hands behind your hips with the elbows close to your sides.

B. Inhale and lift the legs straight up with the feet directly over your head.

C. Breathe and hold for 3-5 breaths. Use your arms to carefully roll the spine back to the floor.

22. Exhale and release into Shavasana

yoga postureA. Let the arms and legs flop out to the sides. The arms are 6-8 inches from the sides of your body and the palms are facing up.

B. Close the eyes and consciously relax the body from the toes to the crown of the head.

C. Breathe deeply through the nose into the belly and hold for 10-15 minutes.

23. End in Easy Pose

yoga postureA. Bend the knees and slowly roll over to one side. Press up into a seated position.

B. Inhale and press the hips down and reach the crown up to lengthen the spine. Roll the shoulders down and back to open the chest. Relax the face and rest the tongue on the roof of the mouth.

C. Lengthen the inhalation and exhalation by breathing deeply into the belly through the nose. Release any thoughts or distractions and let the mind be focused on the breath.

D. Breathe and hold for 10-30 breaths.

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