Prenatal Yoga – Side Stretches

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 23,374
    Yoga teacher Kathy Duke demonstrates how to release tension from the neck and the shoulder by doing side stretches and shoulder rolls.

    Kathy Duke

    Kathy's love of yoga began when she started taking classes nearly 10 years ago. In 2000, she completed the Health Advantage Yoga Center Teacher Training Program with Betsey Downing and Doug Keller. Since then, she has studied with Kaustaub Desikachar, David Frawley, John Friend, JJ Gormley, Judith Lasater and Erich Schiffman and has completed prenatal courses. An Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher with Yoga Alliance, Kathy Duke also holds certifications from the American Council on Exercise and the American College of Sports Medicine. Her teaching experience includes leading classes and individual sessions in the corporate environment, health clubs, studios and in-home, she has volunteered as an EMT and instructed CPR and first aid certifications. After earning a BFA from Virginia Commonwealth University, she has worked in the health and fitness industry for more than seventeen years. Kathy's comprehensive style emphasizes alignment and form of yoga postures, and integrates breathing and relaxation techniques into classes. Kathy is sensitive to the needs of beginers and accomodates those with more experience. Kathy currently teaches classes and workshops at the Health Advantage Yoga Studio in Herndon, VA and The Women's Club in Chantilly, VA and presents yoga seminars in the Northern Virginia area.

    Hi, I am Kathy Duke. I teach prenatal classes at the Health Advantage Yoga Center. Now, we are going to do side stretches and shoulder rolls. Taking your left hand either along the hip or holding on to the side of your chair, on an inhale with the right arm lengthen upward. Let your sitting bone in hip stay firmly planted either on your mat or on the seat of your chair. As you breathe, feel the space between your ribs beginning to open and lift, taking the fingertips up and away from your hip. On an exhale, release, letting the right hand come all the way down. Pressing your right hand into the floor, next to your hip or holding on to the seat of the chair, inhale, lifting the left arm up. Keep the hip grounded, breathe and lengthen. Feel the openness that you create. Exhale and let the left arm come back down.

    Sitting with the tall spine, begin to lift the shoulders, drawing them up to the ears, sliding them back, down and around. Keep the spine tall, relaxing your throat, relaxing your jaw, do as many shoulder rolls as you need to, to help release the tightness and tension from the upper body. As you finish, bring the arm bones up and feel the shoulder blades resting comfortably on your upper back.

    And thats how we release tension from the neck and the shoulder opening the side body to receive our breath.

    Next, we are going to stretch the spine and hips.