We asked our friend and London yoga teacher Rishin Paonaskar to lead us through a morning yoga sequence.
Stretching your muscles and mobilising your joints is the perfect way to release tension in your body and kickstart your day.
This short yoga sequence will mobilise and stretch areas that tend to feel tight after a period of inactivity and moves you from a reclined to standing position. Furthermore it will help energise your body and set you up for a productive day!
1. Reclined Butterfly Pose:
Lie on your back with the feet together and knees apart. Extend your arms over the head so that it feels like the arms are an extension of your spine. Interlace your fingers and press your palms back which will stretch out the sides of the ribcage, the spine, upper back, shoulders, arms and wrists. Take 10 deep breaths here.
2. Supine Twist:
Hug both knees into your chest (either placing palms on the backs of thighs or fronts of shins). Take the arms wide and keeping your knees together, twist from the lower back to take the knees to your right (roughly level with the hips). Place your right hand on your left thigh to deepen the twist while taking your gaze to the left to stretch the neck. Take 5 to 10 breaths and then repeat on the other side.
3. Seated Neck and Shoulder Release:
Assume a comfortable seated position ensuring that the knees are no higher than your hips. Inhale to extend both arms upto the sky. Exhale to extend the left hand towards the left with the palm facing the floor but at shoulder height. Bend the right elbow so it is pointing towards the ceiling and the right palm is in contact with the left side of your face. With each exhalation guide the right ear towards the right shoulder but only if there is no pain in the left side of the neck. Repeat on other side.
4. Forward Fold Variation:
Stand upright and interlace your hands behind the lower back. As you inhale lengthen the spine and as you exhale fold forward while reaching your interlaced hands towards the sky. Hold this position but with each exhalation try to fold more, straighten out legs more and reach hands higher.
Listen to this morning routine by Rishin Paonaskar on Sound Cloud here.
Find out more about Rishin and all classes he is teaching across London on his Facebook page.
Images are courtesy of Yogaia, the world’s first interactive online Yoga studio. You can also practice with Rishin at studios around London, on retreats or online on www.yogaia.com (use the code RISHINYOGAIA for 2 weeks of free online Yoga).