YOUR FOURTH CHAKRA | HEALTHY HEART SERIES PART II

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HEART HEALTHY YOGA

WELCOME BACK MY YOGIS AND FRIENDS! THIS WEEK I'M SUPER EXCITED TO TALK ABOUT PART II OF MY HEART HEALTHY YOGA SERIES! I WANT TO DIVE INTO THIS SEQUENCE WHICH FOCUSES ON THE HEART CHAKRA, A VERY UNIQUE AND SPECIAL PART OF OUR CHAKRA ALIGNMENT. IT IS ESSENTIAL TO INCORPORATE POSES THAT WILL WORK ON THIS AREA AS WELL AS CONTRIBUTE TO OUR CARDIOVASCULAR SYSTEM.

MY GUIDE IS GEARED TO HELP YOU INCORPORATE CARDIO, CHALLENGE, AND BREATH WORK. AS YOU GO THROUGH THIS MINI SERIES, PLEASE CONSIDER THE SPIRITUAL FOCUS. DESIGNED TO CREATE A SPACE FOR SELF COMPASSION, MY GOAL IS TO HELP YOU FIND STABILITY AND HEART HEALING. 

 
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SPIRITUAL FOCUS

AS THE SPRING MONTHS ARE UPON US, I ENCOURAGE YOU TO PRACTICE THESE POSES IN NATURE. SEEK BODY AWARENESS, BALANCE, AND SERENITY. 

TO UNBLOCK, OR OPEN THE CHAKRA, YOU WILL WANT TO CONSIDER WHAT YOU ARE HOLDING ONTO. THINK OF AREAS IN YOUR LIFE IN WHICH YOU MAY:

  • FEEL LONELY

  • ARE HOLDING ONTO GRUDGES

  • LACK EMPATHY

  • HAVE BEEN LESS THAN COMPASSIONATE. 

 

STANDING HEAD TO KNEE POSE |
DANDAYAMANA JANUSHIRASANA

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HOW TO:

 

1. TO START STANDING HEAD TO KNEE, GROUND YOUR LEFT FOOT (OR PADA BANDHA) INTO THE MAT. FROM THERE LOCK OUT THE LEFT ANKLE AND KNEE, DRAWING THE HAMSTRING UPWARD,  SQUEEZING THE LEFT GLUTE.

2. INTERLACING YOUR FINGERS, GRAB THE RIGHT FOOT. ONLY IF THE STANDING LEG IS STRAIGHT, KICK OUT THE RIGHT LEG. ENGAGE THE RIGHT THIGH, KEEPING A STEADY PRANAYAMA, TUCKING IN THE CHIN.

3. THEN AS YOU SUCK IN THE BELLY, ROUND OUT THE SPINE. IF THE RIGHT LEG IS PARALLEL TO THE GROUND, ONLY THEN SHOULD YOU BRING THE ELBOWS TO YOUR KNEE.

*IF YOUR ELBOWS REACH THE KNEE, BRING YOUR FOREHEAD TO THE KNEE. IN MY PHOTO BELOW, MY FOREHEAD COULD NOT MAKE CONTACT. I ONLY WENT AS FAR AS MY BODY WOULD ALLOW THAT DAY.

WHAT IT DOES:

IT IMPROVES NOT ONLY DIGESTION BUT BALANCES THE YIN AND YANG ENERGIES IN THE BODY WHILE CREATING A SENSE OF LIGHT-HEARTEDNESS. IT ALSO INCREASE BLOODFLOW AROUND THE HEART.

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AWKWARD POSE | UTKATASANA

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HOW TO:

1. IN PART I, WE WORKED ON OUR BALANCE, RAISING UP ON THE TIPPY TOES. THIS WEEK, WE KEEP OUR FEET TOGETHER ON THE MAT AS WE LOWER OUR HIPS TO THE GROUND. KIND OF LIKE CHAIR POSE, YOU'LL START BY ENGAGING THE ARMS FORWARD THEN "SIT INTO YOUR CHAIR". KNEES STAY TOGETHER.

2. AS YOU SLOWYLY LOWER DOWN, YOU'LL REACH YOUR HEELS. POP UP HALF AN INCH ABOVE THOSE HEELS SO THAT YOU'RE NOT FULLY RESTING ON THEM. SUCK IN THE BELLY, ARMS STRONG, KNEES POINTING FORWARD, SPINE STRAIGHT. TRY IT FOR TEN SECONDS. THEN SLOWLY RAISE YOURSELF UP INTO A STANDING POSITION.

WHAT IT DOES:

IT STRENGTHENS THE HEART AND DIAPHRAM. OXYGEN WILL CIRCULATE ESPECIALLY IN THE KNEES AND ANKLES.

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OPEN HEART WARRIOR POSE |
ANAHATA CHAKRA BADDHA HASTA VIRABHADRASANA

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HOW TO:

1. NORMALLY I WOULD BEGIN THIS POSE IN DOWNWARD DOG, MOVING INTO A THREE-LEGGED DOG, TRANSITIONING INTO EQUESTRIAN POSE, THEN COMING UP INTO WARRIOR I. (DON'T WORRY I'LL DEMO THESE IN OTHER POSTS OR ON MY SOCIAL MEDIA!) FROM THERE RAISE YOUR ARMS UP HIGH, LIFTING UP OUT OF THE WAIST, HIPS LEVEL.

2. INTERLACE YOUR FINGERS BEHIND YOUR BACK, OPENING THE NECK, SHOULDER BLADES, AND CHEST. REMEMBER TO KEEP YOUR HIPS FORWARD, DRAWING YOUR HAMSTRING MUSCLES UP TOWARDS YOUR PELVIS. TAKE FULL INHALES AND EXHALES AS YOU GO DEEPER INTO YOUR BACKBEND.


WHAT IT DOES:

REDUCES ANXIETY AND STRESS! IMPROVES THE HEART AND MIND CONNECTION AND OPENS THE HEART CHAKRA!

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BOUND SIDE ANGLE POSE |
UTTHITA PARSVAKONASANA

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BONUS POSE! HOW TO:

1. SO THIS POSE I WAS NOT PLANNING TO ADD BUT I DECIDED TO MAKE IT WORTH YOUR WHILE! START IN WARRIOR II POSE, BRINGING THE HIPS LOW TO THE MAT. ROTATING THE ARMS CLOCKWISE, RIGHT HAND IN FRONT OF THE RIGHT FOOT, LEFT HAND UP TOWARDS THE CEILING.

2. MOVE THE RIGHT SHOULDER TOWARDS THE RIGHT THIGH, THE LEFT ARM REACHING BEHIND YOUR BACK. YOU WILL INTERLACE THE FINGERS, OR YOU CAN USE A YOGA STRAP TO MODIFY IF THE HANDS DON'T REACH. YOUR CHEST SHOULD REMAIN OPEN AS YOU LOOK UP TO THE SKY. DON'T COLLAPSE INTO THAT RIGHT LEG.

3. TO RELEASE, PRESS INTO THE LEFT FOOT, LETTING GO OF YOUR INTERLACED FINGERS, COMING BACK TO YOUR WARRIOR II.

WHAT IT DOES:

THIS IS GREAT FOR CHAKRA ALIGNMENT! ALSO HELPS IMPROVE YOUR BREATHWORK, BRINGING RELIEF TO STIFFNESS IN THE CHEST, SHOULDERS AND BACK!