Basic Yoga Routine

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 45,294
    In this series, Michelle Beaumont, fitness expert and yoga instructor demonstrates a basic yoga routine that can be almost at any location and is great to do while traveling. Modifications are also shown for each position/asana/posture.

    Michelle Beaumont

    For more than fifteen years Michelle has been making her mark on the health, beauty and fitness industry. Michelle’s success has brought her recognition as a national level fitness authority. Her elite physique has earned her many top level standings in national beauty, figure and fitness competitions. Her innovative workout programs have been implemented into some of the nation’s leading health and fitness organizations. Her articles have been published by many leading industry magazines. She is an industry speaker on topics including weight management, wellness and group fitness and she specializes in helping large health clubs find and grow new revenue streams.

    Hi, I am Michelle with michellefitness.

    com and Body Mind Fitness Solutions. I am demonstrating how to do a basic yoga routine. You can begin with basic breathing exercises. The only real contraindication to this routine is, if you are pregnant, not to do downward facing doing or any types of inversions in general for a yoga practice. I am going to begin with a yoga mat, tight comfortable clothing on, as well as pulling my hair back. If you do have long hair, I highly suggest it. We are going to begin with the Sun salutation, moving into some basic stretches. You can hold these postures for as long as you like and breathe in them as long as you like. I am just going to simply demonstrate, so you get the idea. Let us begin. Inhale up, exhale back, float down. You can bend your knees a little if you have limited flexibility in your hamstring. Try your head towards your knees or if this is too difficult, place your hands on your shins. Then, inhale up, exhale down, step back into a plank position, draw your knees down, unfold your toes and lower your body weight down, drawing the chest up. Keep the neck neutral, shoulders rolled back and down and elbows stay tight. Your thumb should be just below your breast line and exhale down. Float back into downward facing dog . Your palms are going to get nicely grounded. Make sure, the thumbs are rooted and all of the fingers, come up on your toes, lift up high, pull your navel up and draw your head through your arms, let your head go, just shake it out and draw your heels down, softening your knees. You want to try to move the heels towards the floor, but you do not want to stress on the hamstring, so it s very important that you feel sense of balance from front to back, right to left. So, just play with this a little bit and take several breathes here. I recommend about five breathes. Then, you can just drop your knees down, unfold your toes and stretch and lengthen your spine by drawing your hips back, let your head go, spread your shoulder blades and find your breathing. It is a same yoga breathing that we start with in our breathing video. Keep breathing deeply. Come on up on to all fours. You are going to go into cat stretch . Inhale up, draw the chin up, the arms become straight, palms grounded, navel moves towards the sky and then grip the toes, press the belly button down, draw the chin up and relax on all fours. For core strength, let us take the right arm and left leg and extend it. Square the hips, keep the arm near the ear, level with your shoulder, make sure the opposite arm and shoulder and wrist are in alignment and exhale down and then switch. Remember to breathe and exhale down. From here, go ahead and come right into a comfortable seated position. One heel in front of the other or if you like, one heel on top of the other. Bring your fingertips out to the sides of your body, drawing your shoulders down and tiptoe your fingers to the right, flattening the palm, dropping the elbow and inhale up to stretch the lateral side of the body. Gaze upward at the fingertips and reach for the sky. You want to feel this coming from the hip, all the way up to those fingertips and you will breathe for several breathes deeply into the ribcage. In each and every pose, you want to make sure you are finding the breathe where it is located in the body and really exploring that breathe and take as much time in each pose as you like. Then, exhale down, tiptoe the fingers out on this side and inhale up and exhale down. Add in some generous shoulder rolls, just being mindful of how they feel. We all carry a lot of tension in the shoulder area; a lot of anxiety gets stuck there. Roll forward, good and then inhale up, bring it down to Namaste . Holding it here you can pause for several breathes here if you like. From here, you are going to take your right leg and extend it out. This heel will be located in the center of your body in line with your nose. Fingertips are out, inhale up, rotate your body towards the foot, keep the foot flexed, bend the elbows and reach out towards the foot. This is where a yoga belt can come in handy. You would place your hands around the belt and breathe deeply here. You want to look past the toes, drawing the belly forward and the back, nice and flat and inhale up and exhale down. Again, you will switch side. Same thing on the other side, inhaling up, rotate the navel towards the leg, bend the elbows, reach out or again grabbing your strap, breathe deeply, several breathes and then up and exhale. This is where you can also go into a split stretch . For many people this is difficult. So, what you can do is, you can grab a blanket or a yoga block and you would place this blanket right underneath your buttocks in the split position or you can do the same with the yoga block. This will help elevate your spine a little bit. So, let us inhale up and exhale. You can reach over to one side of your foot, gaze upward and then switch. I like to, kind of, rotate back and forth or if I am feeling stiff, I may hold it and stretch on one side for a while. Again, it is up to you how long you stay in each and every pose. And exhale down. Then, shake out your legs and bring them at center. While sitting still on your blanket if you need it, inhale up, exhale, reach forward. Again, this is where you use your strap or your yoga belt, holding it here, breathing deeply. If you are advanced enough, you can even criss-cross the hands. Make sure that belly and the heart are leading in the stretch and that you are gazing over the toes.

    You do not want to round; it puts too much pressure on your spinal column. Inhale up, exhale, bring both feet together, separate your big toes, press your elbows into your knees, pull up out of your shell, just like a tortoise; lifting from your lower part of your spine and you are going to draw your weight forward or reach your hands out. Just go with your natural flexibility. Yoga postures should not feel stressful. The idea is to be relaxed in each and every pose and go to your edge after a few breathes; you go beyond that edge and relax, good. Our final position is going to be a yoga twist . I am going to give you a very basic twist that again is good for all levels. One heel in front of the other in the center of the body, fingertips down, inhale up and exhale, place one hand on your knee, lift and turn gazing behind you. Then, you will do the same thing again on the other side. This posture is great and it is a wonderful posture to take a lot of deep breathes. It is a detoxing posture that helps cleanse the liver, the kidneys and digestive tract. So, spend some time here. Your final movement would be a nice, quick inhale at center and exhale into your final yoga breathing. You can either bring your hands in Namaste to your heart, the third eye or palms open in the receiving position.