If you're new to yoga, here are 10 calm easy yoga moves to get started. These moves can help relieve everyday stress. Hold poses for three to five breaths before moving onto the next, making sure to modify if anything you do causes any pain.
- Child's pose. This easy yoga pose can be done whenever you need to calm your thoughts. Sit on your knees on your mat. Bring your big toes together underneath your seat, and spread your knees towards the edges of your mat. Lean your chest forward between your knees, resting your forehead on your mat. Extend your arms out in front of you.
Mountain pose. Start from standing, bring your feet together on your mat, arms to your sides. Inhale, sweep your arms over head, ending with shoulder blades reaching down your back and hands reaching for the sky. Gaze forward, careful not to overarch your neck. Exhale, sweep your arms back around, like a swan dive, and place them at your side.
- Standing forward bend. To start this easy, restorative yoga pose, stand with your feet wider than hip-distance apart, legs straight. Extend arms out to your sides like a "T," hinge forward, keeping your back straight. Once you're hinged forward, lower hands to the mat under your shoulders for support. Hold for three to five breaths, then bring your arms back out to a "T," keep your back straight, hinge from your hips, and return to a standing position.
- Standing forward bend with arm variation. This pose is similar to the previous, but includes a shoulder opening arm variation. Start with feet slightly wider than hip-distance. Interlace your fingers behind your back. Again, hinge forward at your hips, letting your interlaced hands fall towards the ground in front of your head. To come up, lead with your hands, hinge at your hips, and keep your back straight.
- Seated forward bend. With legs extended in front of you, sit tall with a straight back, rooted to the ground through your seat. Flex your feet, pointing your toes back toward you. Stretch arms in front of you and bend forward, hinging at your hips. If you need to bend your knees to keep your back straight, do so. Again, hold this calming yoga pose for three to five breaths, releasing slowly and keeping your back straight as you return to an upright, seated position.
- Gorilla pose. From standing, hinge forward at your hips and place your hands on the ground in front of you. Bending your knees as much as you need to, reach your hands under your feet, palms of your hands meeting the soles of your feet. Inhale, lengthen your spine, and when you exhale, bend your knees, drawing your torso in towards your thighs. This is an easy restorative yoga pose, helping to lengthen the spine and back muscles.
- Cat and cow. Start from your hands and knees with a flat back. Inhale into cow pose by arching your back, belly towards the mat, and gazing up towards the ceiling. Exhale and reverse the movement by moving through a neutral spine, then arching your back up towards the ceiling, drawing your chin towards your belly button.
- Sit/easy position. Start by sitting cross-legged with your hands on your knees. Keep your spine straight, and root your seat into the floor. Gently lower your knees towards the ground. Inhale, raise your arms of your head. Exhale, return your arms back down to your knees.
- Cobra pose. Lie on your stomach, arms bent at a 90-degree angle so that your hands are under your shoulders, palms facing down. Keeping your feet and legs together behind you and using the strength of your spine, lift your shoulders and torso off the ground. Your hands can rest gently on the ground, or can lightly hover slightly above the ground. Look straight ahead, hold this pose for three to five breaths, then exhale and release back down to the ground.
- Corpse pose. Lie flat on your back, legs extended and relaxed out in front of you. Rest arms by your sides, palms facing up, eyes closed. Breathe naturally, letting your thoughts pass as you relax. Hold this pose for at least two to three minutes, or as long as you need.
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