5 Poses for Summer Fun to Maintain your Practice During the Heat

Summer is here and with its arrival endless opportunities abound for relaxation, renewal, and a change of pace.  Embracing all of the possibilities of the season is an important way to nurture you and live in the moment. So how do you maintain a semblance of your yoga practice while traveling, enjoying outdoor sports, and cutting back on your regular routine?

 

By doing any or all of the following five yoga poses, which can be done anywhere and require little space, you can maintain your practice, getting full body stretches, and staying flexible for the range of new activities you are adding to your life, as well as ensure a smooth transition back to your regular practice when autumn returns.

 

Mountain (Tadasana) – Mountain pose is a wonderful full body stretch, improving posture and providing the necessary grounding energy to tune in to where you are holding tension in your body and how to let it go.  Standing with your feet together, arms at your side root down through your feet, drawing energy up through your legs, into your hips, and spine, tightening your abdominal muscles, and keeping a steady gaze.  Hold for 3-5 breaths.

 

Forward Fold (Uttanasana) – Folding forward provides an invigorating release, allowing your oxygen and blood flow to reverse course and helping to stay calm and see things from a different perspective while also letting go of tension in your spine. From Mountain simply extend your arms to the sky and fold forward, allowing your head to hang loose, taking deep breaths, allowing a natural lengthening and opening in your spine and hamstrings. Hold for 3-5 breaths.

 

Downward Facing Dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana) – Downward Facing Dog provides a deep, full body stretch that helps to let go of tension.

The easiest way to get into this pose is by starting on hands and knees and lifting up through your hips, drawing your hips to the sky as you lengthen through your spine and legs, drawing energy down into your hands and feet.  Hold for 3-5 breaths.

 

Child’s Pose (Balasana) – Child’s pose calms the brain and provides grounding energy, necessary to alleviate any stress or fatigue you may be experiencing in the moment. Starting on hands and knees, simply sit back on your heels, either reaching your arms straight out in front of you for a deeper back stretch or keeping them at your side for a more restorative experience.

 

Pigeon (Eka Pada Rajakapotasana) – Pigeon Pose is a deep hip opener that also opens the shoulders and chest…areas that hold a lot of tension, especially when adding travel or outdoor sports to your routine. Beginning from Downward Facing Dog, extend one leg behind you, bending your knee and drawing it to the mat behind your wrist. Place your foot closer to your hip for a gentle stretch and further away for a deeper stretch, lengthen through your spine, and fold forward as far as feels comfortable.

 

Whether you are taking time off from your normal practice to enjoy the long summer days with friends and family, taking a vacation, or adding more outdoor activities to your routine you can still maintain a greater range of motion and flexibility in body and mind by adding these five poses to your life.

 

Peace to your hearts, peace to your words, and peace to your thoughts!

Namaste!

Photo courtesy of Jon Sullivan

 

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About Author: Michelle Finerty

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