“Yoga is the journey of the self, through the self, to the self.”- The Bhagvad Gita
Yoga belongs to everyone, and not just to the flexible elites and the spiritual gurus. It is a way of life that brings harmony to our souls. Yoga doesn’t only give us healthier bodies, but also calmer minds. It brings holistic well-being to the lives of people.
There is a misconception about yoga that only magically flexible people can practice it. Flexibility ensues when we practice yoga. And sometimes flexibility is not even a requirement. There are many yoga asanas that can be practiced by amateurs. Don’t be disheartened and discouraged from taking up yoga, even if you can’t touch your toes. There are 4 yoga asanas that can be practiced by everyone, and at the same time gain a legion of health benefits.
Appropriate clothing that allows movement, a yoga mat and a strong chair.
Here’s a list of 4 yoga poses that even beginners can attempt:
1. Shoulder Stretch:
Sit upright on the chair with straight spine. Now slowly swing your right arm in circular motion, bringing it in front of you and then down stretching your hand behind. Repeat the same, but stop your hand as it comes right over your head. Hold your hand up and rotate your wrist clockwise twice. Bring your hand down behind you to complete the circle. Repeat the same twice and follow it up with movement in the opposite direction coupled with anticlockwise movements of your wrists. Follow the same thing with your left hand.
Benefit: This yoga asana brings balance back to your shoulders and eases tension of your wrist, which occurs due to carrying heavy bags and from working on the computer.
2. Bend Over Forward
Stand facing the chair, keeping two feet distance with the chair. Spread your legs as apart as you can. Contract the muscles of the inner thighs and relax them, while keeping your legs straight. Keep your toes directed inward. Now bend over forward keeping your back straight and head in line with it. Place your hands on the back or front of the chair as per your convenience. Hold this position for 30 seconds and focus on your breathing. Imagine your spine expanding and feel your body gaining more flexibility.
Benefit: Stretches and aligns lower back, strengthens inner thighs and legs.
3. Achievable Triangle
Stand with the chair facing your sides. Spread your legs. Put your left foot under the chair, pointing left. Direct your right foot to point slightly towards the left. Contract your leg muscles and relax. Keep your spine straight. Bring your hands to shoulder level, and keep them straight and parallel to the ground. Now bend sideways while pushing your hips to the right. Rest your left hand on the chair while keeping your right hand erect and pointing upwards. Now bring your right arm down to the left diagonally while stretching the sides of your torso. Hold this position for 20-30 seconds. Repeat with your right. If you are confident of yourself, you can do this yoga without a chair as well.
Uses: This yoga asana stretches the whole body and strengthens muscles.
4. Stretch Your Calves
Get down on all fours on your yoga mat. Keep your arms right underneath your shoulders and keep them erect. Keep your back straight. Bring your left knee forward towards your chest and extend it back completely. Now rest your toes on the floor. Shift your left foot in front an inch while trying to place the base of your left foot on the floor (you won’t be able to but try as hard as you can). Hold this pose for 20 seconds. Repeat the same with the right.
Uses: This pose relieves pain of your calves, cramped toes and tight achilles.
Try these asanas today for a healthier body, mind and soul.