Sunday, 23 October 2011

Outreach Yoga Challenge - Day 14 Side plank plonk

My first lie in since I moved here, just what my body and Yin class ordered. The sun shines and the air is brisk, the mountains are calling me so badly but I have to study all day.

I’m taking my books to Jericho beach a few blocks away, it’s the first place I came to last year when I stayed in the Jericho Hostel. The beach faces the mountains perfectly, study in nature, how lucky! The sun shines at the right times! London Fog, bike, books, beach, mountains, read, slurp. Hey London Fog has Vanilla, which is another FLAVOUR that HEALS. See previous blog J

I'll practice my yoga on the beach later tonight to kick start the final operation to get my arms working properly again.  What a great space for Yoga, on the beach staring at oceans and mountains. It's just the set up I'm looking for when I find my retreat location. A great strengthening pose that everyone can do is Side Plank Pose (Vasisthasana). Begin in plank pose, arms straight, wrists aligned to shoulder. Shift weight onto outside of right foot and onto right arm, roll to the side guiding with your hips and bring your left shoulder back, stack your feet. Bring the left arm to the ceiling and elongate through the body, making a straight line from your head to your heels, gaze up to fingertips. BREATHE! Hold for 15-30 seconds, return to plank pose and repeat on the other side.

Here are some variations of the pose below (that need in progress!) See if you can spot and advise on some adjustments?:
I put this together for someone looking for some stress relief, and thought you might like to try it since you can do in your bedroom, living room or when the kids have gone to bed! This is preferably to be done in the evenings. Yin Yoga is the most calming and a really good aid to sleeping, and stress reduction, although I’m a firm believer that all sadhanas are great stress relievers. Examples of sadhanas are:
Yoga - all types
Meditation - Focus on breath awareness and counting
Back to Nature - Being outdoors and doing activities
Mindfulness - Be present in everything you do
Cooking - Its very nurturing and nourishing to think about the right foods, cooking, preparing, feeding others
Creativity - Sing in the shower! Do art, play an instrument, write a poem :)

A combination of all of the above will really have a positive influence on a more joyful and balanced life.

Yin Sequence
Need a mat or blanket to lie on, a towel or cushion to use as a bolster, a blanket to cover yourself with.
Dim lights, light candles, incense, maybe some relaxing music without words if that helps focus.
Yin Yoga is less asanas (poses) for longer periods and they stimulate your mind, bringing peace into your wellbeing, and greatly strengthen the body (especially if you engage engage engage). Its a great intro to Yoga too.

- start in child pose, become aware of the breath, breathing in and out, count 20 breaths
-move into a table top (on all fours), then 20 reps of cat (imagine cat hissing looking through your legs under your belly pose) cow (imagine saggy cow back with head and neck stretched up, looking up) pose breathing in with the cow, out with the cat, pulling in your core, and pushing knees and hands into the mat.
- push up to downward dog, 20 breaths, lifting hips, pushing bum up, sucking stomach in, pushing away with feet and hands
- back to childs pose, 20 breaths
- Heros pose, (sat on knees with hands on thighs) 20 breaths
- plank pose 20 breaths
- lower down to cobra pose (lie on belly, lifting head up and keeping arms bent at the side hardly using them) 20 breaths
- roll onto back, with towel/cushion under upper back to open up the heart, flop arms to sides palms up, flop knees to sides with feet together like frog, put blanket over you, Savasana. Return to normal breathing, but stay in present moment, if your mind takes you elsewhere, come back to counting your breath. Give yourself 10 mins in this pose. Its a meditation to enjoy

Let me know what you think or if you need help with pose instruction or words? I was thinking about creating some utube links too at some point so I can eliminate the camera 10 second timer get in the pose all quick job

Should I be worried about getting this in my change from the local coffee shop???
It certainly made me laugh, I love the grammar! Am I really that cheap???

Hope you've laughed and taken some useful information, don't be shy have a voice, let me know issues you feel strongly about, lets talk! I love to communicate :)

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